Extension of Dr Mulač Sanatorium
1931–1933

Dvořákova 1207/17 (Plzeň) Plzeň Jižní Předměstí
GPS: 49.7275863, 13.3694547

The successful private surgical and obstetric sanatorium of the physician John Mulač, which arose from the reconstruction of the Art Nouveau villa no. 1207 on the corner of Dvořákova and Politických Vězňů Streets (C6–1207V) between 1926–1929 was extended with a large three-storey new building in the early 1930s adjacent to an existing building on Dvořákova Street. The new building gave the entire complex the character of a large medical institution, and completely changed its proportions. The sanatorium received a new entrance from Dvořákova Street through a columned portico, placed on the axis of a slightly protruding avant-corps, which formed the dominant feature of the whole building. The monumentality of the entrance facade was further magnified by vertical plain pilasters, contrasting with the horizontals of the side wings.

The ground floor of the building, which was realised under the direction of the Pilsen builders Josef Krofta, Josef Štika and Josef Wiesner (probably according to the design of the architect Václav Neckář) between 1931 and 1933, housed other surgeries, an office and a radiographic workplace; its main purpose, however, was to hold as many new patient beds as possible, concentrated in rooms throughout the first and second floor, and partly in the elevated basement as well. The new building was equipped with the latest medical equipment and supplies, including a hospital bed lift located in the mirror of the double L shaped stairs in the courtyard tract. The flat roof originally carried a small superstructure, where what was referred to as Rückl’s (sun) Spa was located.

With a short intermission during the war in the years 1944–1945, the surgeon Jan Mulač led his sanatorium until 1948. After nationalisation and several years when the complex served the needs of the State University Hospital in Pilsen (1949–1951), in 1952 the former sanatorium became the Hospital of the Škoda Works (or Vladimir Ilyich Lenin Plants, National Enterprise). This was certainly the reason for it being essentially extended again in the years 1954–1959, this time to a design by the Pilsen Stavoprav company led by the architect Svatopluk Janek (author of the project of the late Functionalist "double hall" of bus garages in the City Transport Company depot from the early 1950s). An extensive annex of a T-shaped ground plan and the extension of the third floor of the existing building from the 1930s, to which the rooftop sun spa had to give way, arose along Dvořákova Street.
The morphology of the building was only minimally affected by the forms of Socialist Realism – Janke attempted the maximum possible continuation of the interwar period object in the indicated Modernist lines of the horizontally arranged main facade with profiled surfaces between the windows. The facade of the new building was plastered with similarly coloured brizolit and on the side facing the street partially covered with artificial stone. The building contained a total of six storeys (two basements, a ground floor and three floors). The main entrance was moved to the central axis of the new annex and equipped with an airy Classicist porch with slender reinforced concrete columns; the previous entrance in the 1930s annex was sealed off and the portico was turned into a covered loggia. The ground floor with the original entrance hall was adapted to the needs of the surgical unit. Apart from the surgical and maternity units the new building also housed the general medicine department, and having sufficient space allowed the rehabilitation available to be complemented by such services as hydrotherapy and electrotherapy, located on the second basement level.

The last major expansion of the hospital was realised in 1979, when it was connected with the neighbouring four-storey building no. 11 on Dvořákova Street – originally an apartment building of the Pilsen-based building contractor Václav Hajšman, built in 1929–1930 probably to the design of the builder Otakar Šrámek. The Functionalist building with a flat roof and a symmetrically-arranged layout and facades with elevated lateral parts and a distinctive central cantilevered cornice initially housed four two-bedroom and a four one-bedroom apartments. In the context of its adaptation to a rehabilitation centre, it was connected to the main building by a covered passage adjacent to the court tract.

The group of the Mulačova hospital buildings is one of the most illustrative examples of gradual layering, overlapping and complementing of various construction stages and the architectural styles characteristic of them in Pilsen.

 


 

Investor

Jan Mulač (MD) / Vladimir Ilyich Lenin Plants, National Enterprise Pilsen

Sources

  • O nemocnici, Mulačova nemocnice, http://www.mulacovanemocnice.cz/o-nemocnici/, vyhledáno 24. 11. 2015.
  • Archiv Odboru stavebně správního, Technický úřad Magistrátu města Plzně
 
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