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Osmolovka: the first high end neighborhood in postwar Minsk

Andrey Ezerin, resident of Osmolovka neighborhood:
Some Minsk dwellers know that this area is called Osmolovka. The neighborhood is named in honor of famous Minsk architecture Mikhail Osmolovsky. His project was used in order to build Osmolovka in 1940. Actually, it was the first high end neighborhood in postwar Minsk. Osmolovka was the neighborhood where military chiefs, actors of Opera and Ballet House and other famous persons lived.

Formerly, some shared apartments and rooms were allocated to painters , on the initiative of then Head of the Arts Department Lyutorovich. After this, the neighborhood got another name – the Lyutorovich settlement. Today these buildings look out-of-date, but early the settlement was considered an exemplary of exclusive building: two-storey houses, cozy internal yards. Some dwellers had poultry, and benches and flowers were around the houses.   

Andrey Ezerin, resident of Osmolovka neighborhood:
The area was completely closed for nights in the 1950s, surrounded by a fence, and nobody couldn’t come to here. Local residents lived not as usual. They put tables on the lawn in summer holidays and in winter moved them to the spacious lobbies and celebrated with all other residents.

Today it is a quiet central part of the city. No more large-scale holidays like in the past, but this place stays unique. Current silence is disturbed only by students of the Academy of Music, which isnot so far from Osmolovka neighborhood.   

Now the future of Osmolovka is still unknown.

Andrey Ezerin, resident of Osmolovka:
Osmolovka is “enchanted” because earlier city authorities tried to demolish it and build something new on this site but attempts were not successful every time. In 1990, there was offered a project of the reconstruction of Osmolovka, but nothing was done then either.

Specialists say that a service life of the these buildings is 50 years. Today the neighborhood needs a complete reconstruction or new construction. Architectures assume some decisions which can totally change the face of this part of the city. 

Andrey Ezerin, resident of Osmolovka:
Now we can see the destroying of this unique area. We lose small architecture forms, original fences. We are proud of Minsk that is clean. Clean doesn’t mean empty. The city should have many interesting buildings and  quarters. I think Osmolovka is the right place to attract not only residents of Minsk but tourists too.

Osmolovka: the first high end neighborhood in postwar Minsk