HERITAGE ALERT: Melnikov House, Moscow

By DOCOMOMO Belgium / April, 3, 2013 / 0 comments

Designed by the Russian avant-garde architect Konstantin Melnikov and completed in 1929, remedy the well-known and highly praised Melnikov House currently finds itself in imminent danger.

sick %20MOSCOW, pilule %20HERITAGE%20ALERT%20APRIL%202013.pdf” target=”_blank”>010122_2013MelHouseThe globally known masterpiece of the Russian architectural Avant-garde the Melnikov House built by Konstantin Melnikov in 1927-1929 is under threat of serious damage to its structural stability and historic fabric due to the on-going lack of conservation treatment and the
immediate threat now posed by the proposed development on an adjacent site, which endangers the house’s internationally important heritage values.

The demolition works which began in August 2012 in the near vicinity to the Melnikov House pose a significant risk to the structural stability of the building. Realization of an architectural project of a new multifunctional center at Arbat Street, 41 with a deep underground parking structure launched in February 2013 will dramatically change the hydrogeology and drainage system of the Melnikov site. The situation is also exacerbated by the underlying geological structure of the land and the delicate nature of the building construction.. It is feared that this could lead to irreversible effects and finally to irreparable damage of Melnikov’s architectural masterpiece, a building which is internationally published and well-recognized as an outstanding item of Russia’s architectural contribution to 20th Century architecture.
This is considered to be a new threat which presented itself this year in addition to numerous conservation problems, general deterioration, low quality of restoration works carried out in the 1990s, and changes in the monument’s setting.

The International Scientific Committee for Twentieth Century Heritage of ICOMOS (ISC20C), Docomomo and the International Union of Architects now urgently request the Russian authorities to take direct steps to prevent further neglect and stagnation of this uniquely Russian heritage resource of the Twentieth Century.

We are calling for:
• A halt to the construction works started in February 2013 in vicinity to the Melnikov House (Arbat Street, 41) and to carry out urgent works for consolidation of a loadcarrying framework and foundations of this world famous heritage resource;
• A detailed hydro geological research, a full structural appraisal and monitoring of the Melnikov House site and its surrounding area to establish and assess the detailed impacts of potential development and identify mitigation measures;
• The urgent review of the proposed multifunctional center at Arbat Street, 41 to swiftly avoid by all possible means any adverse impact of the construction including underground levels which threaten the stability of the Melnikov house;
• The secure protection of the Melnikov House by effective Federal heritage listing;
• The preparation of a standard Conservation Plan for the Melnikov House, thereby applying international benchmark standards for conservation works; and
• A commitment to a strategy for establishing a Museum at the Melnikov House.

read more

ICOMOS ISC20C Melnikov Heritage Alert

ICOMOS Letter of Appeal to Russian Federation

International Appeal on Works of Konstantin Melnikov

go to www.melnikovhouse.org (non-active)