Mayrapetyan erases the history of the 19th-century Yerevan (Series of photos)

Mayrapetyan erases the history of the 19th-century Yerevan (Series of photos)

The 19th-century house located in 4/5 Pushkin Street which belonged to Tairovs family soon will be leveled to the ground, the old wine cellar will be demolished together with the house. The 4 Pushkin Street and the adjacent areas are recognized as a priority interest by the government decree; it was acquired by the owner of “Local Developers” construction company, Samvel Mayrapetyan.

Recently, the winemakers, archaeologists and tour operators alarmed that the years-old cellars of this area need to be preserved, thus being a part of the history of Yerevan, they can serve as a stimulus for the development of tourism and a place of sightseeing in the capital for foreign tourists.

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After the alarm call, some people broke into the cellar of 4/5 Pushkin Street at night and demolish a section of the entrance. The owners of the house are an elderly couple, Kilikyans family, who in no way are able to catch the encroachers to the cellar at night. Speaking of the demolition of the cellar and the old houses, Kilikyan says, “Only Erdoğan can do something similar.”

IMG_7094Ashot Kilikyan told that prior to the acquisition of the house by them, well-known Armenians used to live there, Tairov used to host them, in other words, this house can also be a museum.

A friend of Kilikyans family, Karen Grigoryan, presented us also the history of the 19th-century cellar, about the production of wine and what was going on in the cellar during the Great Patriotic War.

The houses located in 4 Pushkin Street are also separated by arch passageways that are also built in the 19th century. The residents said that people are intentionally damaging a part of the roof of the arch, leave the water tap open from the adjacent house that runs through the power lines. They are doing so, according to the residents, to demolish it under the pretext of being dangerous. The residents told that the construction company owned by Mayrapetyan has found ancient wine pitcher and jars during the construction works on Pushkin Street, and they have not preserved or handed to the specialists but have thrown them away. Generally, 4 Pushkin Street with its adjacent houses, cellars and courtyards are the barriers of the life and culture of the 19th-century Yerevan residents.

According to the experts, this section needs to be preserved even if it is already privatized, the state may compel the investor to preserve the antiquity, and to restore the sector as a small cultural area, which could be an attractive site for the tourists, and finally, a particle of the 19th-century Yerevan history will be preserved. As to how Mayrapetyan will reimburse for Ashot Kilikyan’s estate and according to Kilikyan’ family, what illegal steps Mayrapetyan has applied, we will present them in the future.

Nelly BABAYAN

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