An engineering monument from the early 18th century
A rectangular pool located in the western part of Vasilievsky Island in the 18th - early 19th centuries served as a base for naval rowing vessels (galleys, hence the name). It was dug in 1721-22 (the construction was managed by the architect Domenico Trezzini) to connect with the Gulf of Finland with a canal. The entrance to this canal is marked with two kronspits. An earthwork reinforced with poling and covered with stone was constructed to protect the Galley Harbour from floods.
Shipways for vessels repair and winter shelters were built on flat slopes of the Harbour. Rectangular docks with ship draining facilities have been preserved. The Galley Village was laid to the east of the Galley Harbour, and the Galley Shipyard (demolished in the beginning of the 19th century) and the Rowing (Galley) Port surviving in the present-day Galley fairway were constructed in 1740s.
In the second half of the 18th century, the Galley Harbour was reconstructed and its walls were covered with stone under the guidance of architect Savva Chevakinsky. From the second part of the 19th century, the Galley Harbour was used for testing new fleet facilities. Boat-planes were tested here in the early 20th century. The Galley Harbour gave its name to Galley Passage and Harbour area.
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