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24 March 2021, 09:01

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Photo by Y. Ivanko. Mos.ru

Two thousand tons of metal – structural and stainless steel, bronze, copper, 98 meters above the level of Moscow and a guarantee of 100 years of operation. How one of the most famous monuments is watched – in the mos.ru article.

On the spit of the Moskva River and the Vodootvodny Canal on an artificial island for 24 years there has been a monument “In commemoration of the 300th anniversary of the Russian fleet”, better known as the monument to Peter I Zurab Tsereteli. The first emperor can be seen from afar, he towers over the river and a ship disproportionate to him. The total height of the monument reaches 98 meters. This is one of the tallest and most conspicuous monuments in Russia.

How the monument is arranged inside and the view from the deck of the imperial ship – in the mos.ru report.

Under strict control

The monument to Peter I was opened in 1997, the year of the 850th anniversary of the capital. Many considered the monument controversial, but in a couple of decades it got used to the cityscape and became one of the iconic points on the tourist map of Moscow. The emperor himself and the ship are made of stainless steel and in places are lined with bronze, and the crosses of St. Andrew’s flags and the scroll in their hands are covered with gold leaf.

The monument consists of several parts: a pedestal, a ship and a figure of Peter the Great. Eight pillars are installed at the base of the monument; they go into the foundation to a depth of five meters. Peter turned out to be truly monumental: the total weight of the structures is two thousand tons. For the construction and installation of the monument, a part of the Krymskaya embankment was dismantled and a temporary embankment was made, along which vehicles drove.

The “well-being” of Peter the Great is closely monitored by specialists GBU “Gormost”… The duty group includes engineers and electricians who are responsible for the operation of signal lights and the safety of structures. On average, every month (but it happens more often) they climb the deck to a height of 33.6 meters and explore the integrity of the monument along the way. They check that there is no rust, that the metal structures are not damaged by rain or wind, and that the electrician is working properly. Experts are proud that during the entire period of operation there were no serious breakdowns at the monument.

The duty group also removes sand and small stones that the wind blows into the interior of the monument, and clean the base of the monument from bird tracks. In winter, blots have to be wiped off every month, and in summer – once every two weeks (depending on the activity of the birds). In addition, in the warm season, specialists from the State Budgetary Institution “Gormost” monitor the work of the fountain at the base of the monument. It is he who creates the impression that Peter’s ship is cutting through the Moskva River.

“The monument concentrates and collects everything that was associated with the construction of the Russian fleet. Then the fleet allowed the country to open a window to Europe and expand the borders of the state. And the monument, with its grandeur and accuracy of its manufacture, shows how significant this event was for the country. On the one hand, we are doing some technical work. On the other hand, we feel our involvement in the preservation of historical monuments, ”says Vitaly Osokin, engineer on duty at Gormost.

Take care of your head

Climbing to the base of the monument is not an easy task. To do this, you need to go along the horizontal stairs above the river. Then – bend over and crawl under a part of the structure, only then you can see a small door that leads inside. Behind it is a dark and damp room containing powerful metal structures. “Take care of your head, look around,” Vitaly Osokin constantly repeats. Some dangerous places are prudently wrapped in foam rubber.

Metal flights of stairs lead up to Peter I, but only up to a height of 24 meters. By the way, the height level is indicated on the last steps of the aisles to make it easier for workers to navigate. Further to the deck itself, which is at a height of 33.6 meters, you can climb only by vertical stairs.

The inside of the structure is covered with epoxy paint. It adheres firmly and prevents rust formation. For the same, the storm drainage pipes were made of copper. “Such a pipe will not rust, in this sense copper is eternal, it will definitely outlive us,” says Vitaly Osokin.

You can see everything from above

The observation deck of the ship offers a beautiful view of the center of Moscow. In one side – the art cluster “Red October” and the Cathedral of Christ the Savior, in the other – the new building of the Tretyakov gallery, the park of arts “Muzeon” and the Shukhov tower. Also visible are the towers of the Moscow City business center, the Ostankino tower and Stalin’s skyscrapers. At the same time, Gormost’s specialists believe that it is impossible to open an observation deck here due to the technical complexity of the facility.

The dimensions of Peter I himself are also impressive. Its height is 18 meters, and its weight is 110 tons. The man barely reaches the giant’s shin. The specialists of Gormost are calm about such a scale of the monument. According to them, it comes with experience.

“The adaptation took place in just a month, but I am calm about the height, I have no fears. First you look around, then experience accumulates. In my opinion, this is a very interesting composition and engineering structure, “says Andrey Malykhin, engineer on duty at Gormost.

You cannot climb above the deck without special climbing training. And only industrial climbers conquer the top of the monument and lubricate the flagpole bearings so that the metal flags can turn freely under the influence of the wind. This maintenance should be done annually. Also, their help is required when you need to clean and touch up a monument in dangerous high-altitude places.

Gormost’s specialists proudly emphasize that with such care, the monument is guaranteed to stand for 100 or more years, allotted to it by its service life.

EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and or sentence structure not be perfect.

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