Arsenal is a shopping center with unique architecture and a special story.
The building was constructed towards the end of the Czarist times in 1917. The majestic red brick building was initially meant to be a barracks for Russian soldiers, but due to construction delays, it was put to use as a military manufacturer after Estonia Independence in 1918.
In the beginning, Arsenal’s main task was to repair guns that were left behind after World War I and the War of Independence. Later, Arsenal was the supplier for the Estonian Defense Forces, providing them with machine guns, target guns, hand-grenades, gasmasks, anti-tank mines, artillery ammunition, optical devices, cartridges and gun parts. They even built armored cars.
During World War II, Arsenal’s modern production equipment and archives were moved to Russia. After the war, the building was used as a Soviet naval artillery facility. They repaired ship and shore artillery, rockets, optical, and electronic devices.
After Estonia’s re-independence in 1991, Arsenal completed the orders for the Estonian Defense Forces until the company went out of business during the financial crisis and the building was sold in 2012. In Autumn 2016, Arsenal Center opened its doors to visitors.