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Usva Viewpoint

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Architects: Ad Hoc Architecture

Year: 2020

Location: Perm Region, Russia

This 300m2 viewpoint is located five kilometers from Usva village, in Russia’s Perm region. It offers views of the Usvinskie Pillars—120-meter cliffs that rise vertically from the river.

The famous Devil’s Finger is a freestanding rock towering 70 meters above the massif. The location and orientation of the viewpoint coincide with the visual axis on the Devil’s Finger. The viewpoint looks to complement the natural site and not to violate it. Its location, at a slight elevation from the river so as not to disturb the ecosystem that has developed, supports this.

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The portal of the viewpoint not only allows you to hide from the rain or sun, but also accentuates the view of the Devil’s Finger. The viewpoint ramp is a kind of amphitheater which allows you to climb inside under the roof—an allegory to the nearby Stolbovoy grotto.

The complex shape of the viewpoint platform creates interesting scenarios of movement in space and opens up new perspectives on natural attractions. At the entrance, tourists are greeted by an information plate with a welcome inscription and a route map to the rocks. Closer to the water, there is a bench to admire the views, relax, and drink tea.

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The observation deck was designed to create the feeling of floating above the ground and consists of a metal structure covered with wood. The plasticity and dynamism of the form lines reflect the energy of a mountain river in a monomaterial shell, and the plan of the viewpoint resembles the spelling of the Greek letter alpha, α.

Photography: Grigoriy Sokolinsky

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