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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Zlín




In case somebody is an enthusiast about functionalist architecture, there is one regional centre in Czech republic for him/her. Development of the town of Zlín, populated by 79,000 nowadays, is connected with Tomas Bata, tinker, entrepreneur and leader of Bata shoe company, one of the worlds largest in interwar period. Between 1900 and 1940 Zlín grew up from a periferique little town of 3,600 into a 40,000 town – one of most important in pre-WW2 Czechoslovakia. Bata asked several great architects, Le Corbusiere included, to built a new city. Therefore, there are two typical characteristics about Zlín architecture. Functionalist objects and Bata’s brick housing colonies, very unique as for Central Europe and very different from whatever in Czech republic one can find. The “21” building was Central European tallest skyscraper back in 1937 (77,5 m). Located in eastern Moravia, 305 km (190 mi) eastern from Prague, mostly in a valley of Dřevnice river surrounded by hilly terrains, it is a pleasant place for a one day visit. Especially, if you do not mind about complete lack of medieval heritage.


Zlín on a map of Czech republic




Introduction




Aerial




old Bata factories area










Some of Le Corbusiere urban footprints




The 21 Skyscraper – built in 1937 as the tallest Central-European skyscraper of the time







View from the top




Moskva Hotel, late 1930s






Bata houses










Districts of Bata houses










The Shoe-production museum




Tomas Bata University




central Zlín








Town Hall




Central square




Church of St. Philip and Jacob






Zlín yellow-blue trolley-busses




Zlín Chateaux








Lešná Chateaux Zlín outskirts






Final one...

View on Jižní Svahy commie-block area



:)
 

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ask some moderator I guess. Zlín can offer really unique architecture imho.
 

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Nice thread. I used to know a Czech girl from Zlin who was working in Ireland. I was almost about to visit Zlin, but......things didn't go as planned!:)

Some very nice pictures. However, when you research Zlin everything tends to focus on the Bata developments. I wonder can anybody post pics of some of the Communist era buildings and also any new (1990s-2000s) developments?

Thanks

C
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
^^
Yes, everything tends to focus on the Bata developments - in matter of architecture :).

I only have these two pictures of commie-blocks in Zlín. The Jižní svahy (Southern Slopes literally) one:






Some architecture from last 20 years:







 

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Hey ov-79

Thanks for the pics!:)

I guess I like communist architecture basically because I like mid-late 20th things from an urban point of view. Also, in Ireland atm we have alot of immigrants from Eastern and Central Europe. Loads of my friends are Polish, Czech, Slovak, Lithuanian etc. So, most of them we have been born and raised in Commie Blocks...or planelak(??) as you Czechs say.

Its interesting that Zlin doesn't seem to have an "old town". Even small towns on the continent have quite extensive older areas. So, Zlin must have really been a tiny village when Bata started his factory?

The Southern Slopes looks overbearing and interesting at the same time. Its so strange to see a high rise loom up from a hillside!

C
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
thebigC:

On this picture there is central square with few original old-town buildings.



The village of Zlin, mentioned in 1322 got town law in 1397. Yet the townie had not broken population number of 3 thousand until beginning of 20th century. Bata company was found in 1897, but it haven't become a strong company until 1910's. During the so called Bata period (1910-1940) the townie grew up from pop 3,600 to pop 41,000. So, yes, Zlin development is very closely tied with the company development.

In fact, the amount of commie blocks is not that big like it may be seen (unlike other housings, blocks are seen from everywhere as they had been built on slopes and hills). During commie-block period (1960-1990) Zlin grew up from pop 54,000 to pop 83,000 (absorbing several family-housed villages included). It may be seen as a large increase. But in former East Block context it actually the increase is not so big. Anyway, Zlin current population dropped to 78,000 (caused natural decrease of population, the migration saldo is closed to zero).

PS: More info on town webpage :).
 

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Thanks ov-79.

So, it seems like Zlin was really a village before the Bata Company. Even looking at your photos, there doesn't seem to be a very intact main street or town square of older architecture. This would suggest that there was very little of it.

So its seems based on your information that the Commieblocks in Zlin were really only to cope with Natural growth as opposed to grand Communist urban planning. Given that Bata was considered an enemy of the Communists its a wonder that so much of his architecture survived!

C
 

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Hey

I checked out the Zlin town web page. Its pretty good. It even has some nice black and white shots of the "Jižní Svahy" I was asking about.

I found a couple of other sites too...mostly in Czech. I will post them soon.

C
 

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