The Wooden Tower Of Gangsters
Dominating the skyline of Arkhangelsk, a city in Russia’s far north-west, it is believed to be the world’s tallest wooden house, soaring 13 floors to reach 144ft – about half the size of the tower of Big Ben.
The house that Sutyagin built is also crumbling, incomplete and under threat of demolition from city authorities determined to end the former convict’s eccentric 15-year project.
When Sutyagin began work on his dacha in 1992, he claims he was only intending to build a two-storey house – larger than those of his neighbours to reflect his position as the city’s richest man, but certainly not a contender for the Guinness Book of Records.
However, convinced by a trip to see wooden houses in Japan and Norway, he concluded that he had not used roof space efficiently enough and decided to keep building.
“First I added three floors but then the house looked ungainly, like a mushroom,” he said. “So I added another and it still didn’t look right so I kept going. What you see today is a happy accident.”
I am so building myself a wood tower.