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Changes in the architecture of North Korea (slideshow)

Life in North Korea not so many aspects, subject to change. And if something changes, then only with the approval of the authorities. How do I find the correspondent of The Guardian Oliver Wainwright, was no exception and the local architecture: North Korean leader Kim Jong UN announced a new architectural era. However, she has come so far, only in Pyongyang with its illusion of prosperity, high rates of construction and periodic executions of architects.

After a devastating U.S. bombing in 1951, Pyongyang was rebuilt almost from scratch. The construction of “Grand garden of Juche architecture” reached its peak in 1980-e years thanks to the financial support of the USSR: it then began to build a triangular rügen hotel with five revolving restaurants on top, not completed to this day. However, since then, Pyongyang has remained socialist realism in the spirit of construction, combining monumentalism and militarism, visual images of Stalin’s Empire and Korean folklore.

“Architectural era” Kim Jong UN remains true to the tradition, but in a different way: first, construction is underway on the money already Chinese investors, and secondly, much attention has been paid to the entertainment industry. If all over the world North Korean leader know by frequent nuclear threats and ruthless executions of undesirables, at home he had a reputation as a wise Builder, including modern facilities for the small middle class of the country. While the bulk of North Korea suffers from drought, power outages and food shortages in Pyongyang appeared popular amusement Park Rungna Golf, amusement rides, swimming pool, cinema and Dolphinarium. Another capital innovation – the munsu water Park, a visit to which can also afford only the Metropolitan elite.

“Let’s break in a Golden age of construction”, – says one of the 310 issued by the government for this year slogans. The most notable confirmation of this intention is the recent complex of eighteen 47-story towers on the street Chancon that foreigners have already dubbed Pangelinan. In the Golden age of the construction of the North Korean leader calls to break the reactive rate, so new skyscraper in Pyongyang appear less than a year. This strategy, however, has its disadvantages: last year, 23-storey residential building collapsed during construction, killing tens or even hundreds of already moved-in residents. The Deputy Minister of construction Mr. choe Yong gon, according to South Korean media, then executed. Tell that this fate could not be avoided and the chief architect of Pyongyang airport MA Won Chung, whose project did not like Kim Jong-UN because “it was not taken into account the idea of the party about architectural beauty, so necessary to the preservation of national identity”. New architects understood better with the roof open last year, the terminal has the shape of a traditional Korean roof, and its facade is decorated with images of ancient national symbols – the white tiger and blue dragon.

Another slogan – “Let’s turn the country into a socialist Wonderland”. The feeling of a fairy tale really appears if to pay attention to upholstered pink, blue, light yellow and peach shades in the new architecture and renovated interiors of the buildings of the 80s. Oliver Wainwright suggests that the choice of colors made consciously to create an image carefree prosperity in a country where most of the population lives below poverty, and the new buildings erected by the forces of numerous inmates.