Blue Crow Media

A new map marks a path through the Russian capital in pursuit of Soviet avant-garde architecture.

The Shukhov tower in Moscow is still standing today, just barely. In early 2014, the Russian State Committee for Television and Radio Broadcasting agreed to dismantle the Constructivist broadcast tower only to see Moscow City Hall officially protect it later that summer after widespread opposition to its demolition.

The tower is just one of many structures all over Moscow built during a time of great artistic energy in the young U.S.S.R. Many of them can now be spotted easily on a new map.

From left to right: Shukhov Tower, NKPS Building, Gosplan Garage. (Natalia Melikova)

Constructivist Moscow Map, released earlier this month, includes 50 structures that defined the ambitions of Soviet Russia in the years following the Russian Revolution. Traditional ornament was rejected in favor of geometry and new materials to express a revolutionary way of living from residential towers to factories. “For the first time,” writes the preservation activist Natalia Melikova in the map’s introduction, “innovations developed by Russian architects and engineers began to influence architecture abroad.”

Melikvoa runs an advocacy group called The Constructivist Project, which collaborated with Blue Crow Media on the architecture map. As these buildings age in a politically and financially constrained post-Soviet Russia, their futures are far from certain. With a copy of Constructivist Moscow Map, you can spot them (and their nearest Metro stations) while they still stand.

Map, £8 at Blue Crow Media.

About the Author

Most Popular

  1. Transportation

    You Can’t Design Bike-Friendly Cities Without Considering Race and Class

    Bike equity is a powerful tool for reducing inequality. Too often, cycling infrastructure is tailored only to wealthy white cyclists.

  2. A photo of a visitor posing for a photo with Elvis in downtown Nashville
    Perspective

    Cities: Don’t Fall in the Branding Trap

    From Instagram stunts to Edison bulbs, why do so many cities’ marketing plans try to convince people that they’re exactly like somewhere else?

  3. Amazon HQ2

    Without Amazon HQ2, What Happens to Housing in Queens?

    The arrival of the tech company’s new headquarters was set to shake up the borough’s real estate market, driving up rents and spurring displacement. Now what?

  4. A photo of a new car dealership
    Transportation

    Subprime Auto Loans Are Turning Car Ownership Into a Trap

    A record 7 million Americans are three months late on their car payments, revealing what could be cracks in the U.S. economy.

  5. Transportation

    With Trains Like Schwebebahn, No Wonder Germans Love Public Transit

    Infrastructure like this makes it clear why Germany continues to produce enthusiasm for public transit, generation after generation.