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Looks like Legoland, but it's Kiev: The »Comfort Town« district was designed to brighten up the former grey Soviet buildings from the fifties and sixties. The houses, which are decorated in yellow, orange, lime green or pastel blue, have up to eight floors. The district covers 40 hectares and is home to more than 20,000 people, the last building was completed in 2019.

Photo: Robin Simon / imagebroker / IMAGO

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Soviet architecture once relied on unadorned, standardized and thus inexpensive buildings to create mass living space. Today, many people consider the grey and uniform apartment blocks to be dreary. The new colorful houses stand out visually from it.

Photo: Robin Simon / imagebroker / IMAGO

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Comfort Town was not spared from the effects of the Russian war of aggression. In May 2023, a Russian drone intercepted by Ukrainian anti-aircraft defenses crashed into one of the buildings in the neighborhood. Fortunately, no one was injured.

Photo: liudmilachernetska744 / Pond5 Images / IMAGO

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On the ground floor level there are cafés, shops and offices, and each building also has underground bomb shelters, where residents have been able to get to safety in the event of an air raid alarm since the beginning of the war.

Photo: Maverick1996 / Pond5 Images / IMAGO

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From a bird's eye view, the colourful buildings look even more like toys, but this is also where the plan behind the architecture becomes apparent: lots of greenery, quiet courtyards, children's playgrounds, sports fields, a sports studio with several swimming pools, a school and a kindergarten.

Photo: Domareva / Pond5 Images / IMAGO

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The district also differs from Stalinist architecture in terms of windows: instead of monotonous rows, there are varied arrangements and French balconies.

Photo: Oleksandr Prykhodko / Pond5 Images / IMAGO

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The Comfort Town residential project is the work of the architectural firm Archimatika, which received several awards for it at the 2019 World Architecture Festival.

Photo: sarymsakov / Pond5 Images / IMAGO

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