Dom Chekista (Security Officer House)

The NKVD housing complex, meant for the employees of internal affairs agencies, was built in the years of 1928—1932 according to the design of architects
Ivan Antonov and Veniamin Sokolov and in an atmosphere of stringent secrecy.
It is no surprise that there exist enough legends and stories associated with this
remarkable in every way building to fill an entire book by historian Sergey Pogodin.
We’ll mention a couple here. Fact number one: all the building’s workers were
sent to Sosvalag upon its completion, where they disappeared. Fact number two:
it consists of two residential buildings, a 4-story, U-shaped building and an 11-story tower adjacent, which forms a sickle, the symbol of the Soviet myth. This composition is far from its original conception, but after the arrival of its first tenants
in 1929, the architects needed to make emergency adjustments. Due to the complaints from the Verkh-Isetskiy district residents, indignant at the appearance
of “another nest of gentlefolk with a fountain” in the city, reaching the “top brass”.
The fountain, by the way, remained, and the special, elite status only strengthened after high-ranking security officers and party members, writers, and artists moved in. Fact number three: the unique house-tower was one of the first
in Sverdlovsk equipped with two elevators. We could go on, but it is better to note
that in the internal layout of the housing complex, four- and five-bedroom luxury
apartments were adjacent to compact apartment-cells, and the complex’s extensive infrastructure included showers, a laundry, cafeteria, hairdresser, kindergarten, film club, and even a shooting range.

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