Russian architect Svetozar Andreev’s plan to recreate the fallen Azure Window as a gigantic metallic museum has been given the thumbs-up by an Israeli corrosion expert, who argued that the project is both feasible and beautiful.
“This is a jump into the future,” Alec Groysmann, who chairs the Israeli Society of Chemical Engineers and Chemists, wrote in an essay for Andreev.
“I am sure this will be the new symbol of Malta. How far-sighted the government of Malta will be if it implements this unique project!?”
“Someone will ask why [we should] interfere with nature or create an eclectic mix of architecture and nature? Please, recall how either the Parisians resisted the construction of the Eiffel Tower or how the Israelis of the Calatrava String Bridge at the entrance to Jerusalem. Today they are the symbols of these countries, modern culture, successes of our society, its achievements.”
Andreev has proposed constructing the new Azure Window out of titanium or stainless steel, and Groysmann said both options could be feasible.
“My personal experience with stainless steels and new data suggests that austenitic steels with a molybdenum content of more than 4-6% and Duplex steels can be used to implement the “Heart of Malta” project,” he said.
“Of course, some additional research is needed. Then we will be able to realize the connection and interaction between different arts and to turn the “frozen music” of architecture into a Grand Cultural Center that attracts people of different interests and ages. This project will be the pride of the country of Malta, its attraction, the only in the world, and will mesmerise not only Maltese, but also tourists from other countries. And I will definitely be among them.”
Following the collapse of the Azure Window in March 2017, the Maltese government announced an international offer for proposals for the Dwejra site. The only noteworthy proposal so far has been Andreev’s ‘Heart of Malta’ project, which will involve rebuilding the Window with metal and turning the interior into an exhibition space for Maltese history.
The project is being assessed by the Environment and Resources Authority but Prime Minister Joseph Muscat has already made it clear where he stands on the matter, stating a few months ago that he doesn’t think Andreev’s proposal is “the right thing to do”.