New York City Street Renamed After Russian Author Dovlatov

By Vasili Sushko

NEW YORK (VR) - A street in New York City has been renamed after the famous writer Sergei Dovlatov, marking the first time in history that the city has honored a Russian author in such a way.

The measure was approved personally by New York Mayor Bill de Blasio this week. The mayor said in a statement that Dovlatov was one of several individuals and entities that have "made lasting contributions to New York City."

Over 18,000 people signed a petition in support of the renaming, including City Councilwoman Karen Koslowitz who sponsored the action.

"We're speaking about a writer of international reputation," a spokesperson for Councilwoman Koslowitz told Radio VR prior to the decision. "This is a tribute that I believe would be made to anyone of Mr. Dovlatov's stature."

Born in Ufa, USSR, Dovlatov struggled to make a name for himself as an author due to his inability to get his work published. It was only after he immigrated to the United States in 1979 that Dovlatov produced some of his most famous works, including The Suitcase, The Zone and Ours: A Family Album. In addition, Dovlatov was published in The New Yorker and the New York Times.

The intersection of 63rd Drive and 108th Street in Queens was renamed "Sergei Dovlatov Way." It is the closest intersection to where he lived until he passed away in 1990 at the age of 48.