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Arch Vallin de la Mothe (St. Petersburg)
February 25, 2016 16:28


Arch Vallin de la Mothe in New Holland Island is one of the finest types of historic St. Petersburg. The Arch with columns and a channel passing inside it looks mysteriously.

Nearly three centuries the entrance to the island’s area was limited. The artificial island (the only man-made island in the Neva delta) New Holland is limited by Moika, Admiralty and Kryukov channels. Once upon a time Peter built a leisure palace with a pond and a garden here near the shipyards. The island housed wood warehouses. The area resembled Holland to the Tsar and that is why it got its name. Later the warehouses were rebuilt in stone, and the pond was expanded and connected by channels with Moika and Kryukov channel dividing the island into two parts. Cargo delivered from warehouses by the water directly to the Admiralty. The arch of brick and granite with the height of 23 m, which completed the architectural appearance of the complex, combined the high warehouse blocks on the Moika.

At the beginning of the XIX century a Marine prison, which eventually received popularly nickname "Butylka (Bottle)", was built in the shape of tower in New Holland Island. From this name comes the phrase "to go into the bottle" that means asking for trouble. Aside from sailing the tourist boats through the channel in the vicinity of New Holland Island it is always quiet and deserted. The impression of abandonment is added by the uncertain state of the island, which is prepared for several years for reconstruction.

For years, nothing much special was happened there, the territory was occupied by military units and warehouses. New Holland quietly decayed. The investors were unsuccessfully looked for it until there was a great fire in 2004. After that the first competition of island reconstruction projects was carried out. The project, proposed by Norman Foster, proved unworkable. The second architectural design competition for New Holland Island was arranged in the spring of 2011. And in the summer there were two significant events at the same time: on 16 July the island was open for the first time in 300 years to visitors and now anyone can visit it. And the second, the winner of the announced competition of island reconstruction projects was named. It was American architectural company. The reconstruction project is designed for 7 years.





Author: Anna Dorozhkina

Tags: St. Petersburg     

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