NEW TOWN IN WALBRZYCH AS AN EXAMPLE OF THE INFLUENCE OF ART NOUVEAU IDEAS UPON THE ACADEMIC TOWN PLANNING PRACTICE OF JOSEF STÜBBEN

BOGNA LUDWIG

New ideas in projecting towns were shown in the first years of the 20th Century. J. Stübben was one of the most celebrated practising and theoretic architects in the new discipline of town planning. He developed academic methods based on the achievements of French urban planning starting from Haussmann. However, he began to introduce secession elements in his projects. One of example of the new system in the composition and disposition of functions is the New Town in Walbrzych.

Walbrzych, an intensely developing industrial city, suffered of a great shortage of dwellings. The local administration decided to build a new independent quarter. The project was given to J. Stübben in 1904. He drew up the plan of a district of multifamily houses in compact settlements. The design was based on the old schema of a communication network. He suggested two representative city centres - one open market place and a second green square. The street and squares had to be flanked by frontages of apartment buildings, with three-storey in the central part, two-stories in the main part of the district and one-storey in the peripheries.

After splitting the terrain into building plots, the city government sold them to private investors and housing association of civil workers. The development started from the surroundings of the market square and the main street. At first, impressive Art Nouveau style tenement houses were built, followed by more modest modern forms. In the 1920s the longer frontages of dwelling buildings in the modernistic style were built by the Silesian housing association Schlesische Heimstaette and the city housing association. The residential complex was completed with public buildings: the post office, the old people's home, the high school and the school of custom officers.

The New Town is a very interesting example of including Art Nouveau solutions in the neo baroque conception of urban planning. The new interpretation of the functional system and composition is based on the natural and irregularity and the resignation of axial composition.