The Moscow house of Russian architect Konstantin Melnikov, widely regarded as one of the city’s most precious architectural gems, is to be turned into a museum.
The building, on Krivoarbatsky Lane, was completed in 1929 and boasts two intersecting cylindrical towers with an array of hexagonal windows.
But, owing to its prominent central location, it has been under threat of demolition from developers eager to cash in on the city’s booming economic development.
Now a 34-year old Russian property tycoon, Sergey Gordeev, has allayed fears that the house will be razed by promising to convert it into a museum to commemorate Melnikov, who died in 1974.
Speaking to the New York Times, Gordeev said he would base the scheme on ‘Le Corbusier’s Villa Savoye or Sir John Soane’s house in London’.
He added: ‘I’ve already spent $4 million on the Melnikov House. I really think to do preservation in the proper way – government doesn’t have the money for that.
‘I like the situation in America, where preservation has the support of private institutions. This is the right model for Russia, where there are a lot of rich people.’