The last market square in Krakow? : Two concepts of a neighbourhood's square

Maciej Motak
2021
Two concepts of Urzędnicze [Official] Neighbourhood's square in Krakow, Poland are discussed: the 1920s' more traditional one and the 1960s' Modernist one. The paper is based on thorough research in national, cooperative, and private archives. The regulation plan of Urzędnicze Neighbourhood was evaluated by engineer Marian Lenk in 1924. It covered 9 hectares near the northeastern borderline of then recently extended Greater Krakow, pinpointing 78 plots, eight streets, two bridges, and the
more » ... . By 1939 the neighbourhood became part of Krakow's 600-plot new district consisting of a number of neighbourhoods and posing an example of garden suburb. Lenk-a person hitherto unknown in research-was the author or co-author of all those plans, which resulted in the district's coherence. Seven squares of various shapes and sizes were planned in the district, their two sequences culminating in the discussed square of Urzędnicze Neighbourhood. That square's plan was based on an atypical and quite original figure-specifically shaped octagon. Never granted an official name, however, in some documents it was referred to as Rynek [Market Square], appropriately for Krakow long-term tradition. The Second World War in 1939-1945 stopped the neighbourhood's construction halfway, including the square. Its final shape resulted in part from the 1960s' projects and meant a contrast to the 1920s' idea since it reflected another stylistic approach. The traditional symmetry of buildings and plan was replaced with Modernist asymmetry, both spatial and functional. The sharing of public space with traffic function gave way to the dominance of local traffic.
doi:10.26051/0d-515r-npba fatcat:c4c6foibx5ftjnbjpmpftzp4y4