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The Moscow Triumphal Gates
The Moscow Triumphal Gates
The Moscow Triumphal Gate is a triumphal arch, combining the styles of Empire, Renaissance and Romanesque styles; was built according to the project of the provincial architect Kruglikov Yakov Alekseevich in 1813 in Irkutsk in honor of the decade of accession to the throne of Alexander I. The gates were located at the intersection of the streets of the Moscow-Lanin and the Lower embankment of the Angara at the exit from Irkutsk towards the European part of Russia — the Moscow highway. Hence the name Moscow was obtained.
September 15, 1813 the solemn opening of the arch was held. The Moscow Gate was a four-tier building 19 meters high and almost 16.5 meters wide. At the very top was a tea-room, in which, on the opening day, a reception was arranged for the then civilian governor Nikolai Treskin and Bishop Benjamin I.

May 13, 1911 at a meeting of the City Duma, it was decided to demolish the monument, but this caused a series of indignation among public figures and citizens. Pavel Shchusev (the younger brother of Aleksei Shchusev) also rose to the defense of the «Moscow Gate» from destruction.
By 1928, the «Moscow Gate» completely decayed and dismantled the arch. Thus, the monument stood for 115 years.
In August 2009, it was decided to restore the «Moscow Gate» to the 350th anniversary of Irkutsk. In the summer of 2011, the construction of the triumphal gates began (200 years after the first construction was completed).

The original materials for the reconstruction of the Moscow gates with the exact preservation of their architectural forms and colors were the preserved archival materials, numerous photographs of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, as well as works by Irkutsk artists — B. Lebedinsky, N. Lodeyschikov, N. Dobrovolsky, who wrote the gates with nature.

The new arch 19 meters high, 7.1 meters long and 16.3 meters wide, is made of reinforced concrete, bricked, plastered with high-quality acrylic-based materials and painted yellow. The decision to use the latest technology, and not the old methods (made up of bricks in a solution of chicken eggs), was taken not accidentally. Around the arch is a very aggressive environment: constant wind, high humidity and so on. Modern materials will make the construction more resistant to external factors, which means that the building will last longer.

The reconstructed Moscow gates have rightfully become a symbol of the 3-century city of Irkutsk, linking the past of our region with the present, passing a careful attitude to the national monuments of history and culture to future generations.
On September 14, 2011 the Moscow gates were opened.