In 1908 Nicholas II commissioned the Fyodorovsky Cathedral for the officers of the Imperial Escort and Cavalry, stationed nearby and responsible for the security of the Imperial family. The foundation was laid in 1909, but the design was widely criticized and Nicholas decided to scrap it and finish the cathedral in traditional ancient Russian style. During the subsequent construction the cathedral’s elder priest, Dmitri Loman, had the idea to create Fyodorovsky gorodok, a complex of buildings in the same 17th century style. The complex would house an Officers’ Club and quarters for various clergymen and lower-ranking civil servants. The project was spearheaded by Professor of Architecture Stepan Krichinsky and the Society for the Rebirth of Artistic Rus', who inspired wealthy Petersburgers with the idea and got them to fund the project, and assembled a team of artists and art historians to create this monumental collection of structures, historically accurate in every detail. A special workshop was set up in the Volga town of Staritsy to provide the fabulous limestone facings, which were cut with truly impressive skill. The artists and architects who built Fyodorovsky gorodok intented it to become the center of a spiritual and cultural rebirth of historical Russian traditions. Sadly, it became instead the last architectural breath of a dying empire. The revolution was just a few months away.