Building of the State German Technical School in Pilsen and the extension of the Secondary School of Engineering in Pilsen
1914–1922 / 1957–1960

Majerova 1615/1, Klatovská třída 1615, 1615 / 111, 109 , náměstí Míru 1615/16 (Plzeň) Plzeň Jižní Předměstí
GPS: 49.7287861, 13.3701467

The project of a large two-storey building of the German Technical School at the corner of Klatovská Avenue and Majerova Street was designed by the architect Ludwig Tremmel in 1914. Tremmel was a graduate of the Vienna Academy active in Pilsen from 1907. The chosen site, around which farmland still stretched instead of the planned residential blocks at that time, was situated quite far from the city centre, thereby offering a peaceful environment for studying; nevertheless, it was linked to one of the main city avenues (already with a tram line).

Given the events of the war, the construction process was rather lengthy and the final building inspection didn’t take place until 1922. The building was originally intended only for the needs of the German technical school, which was founded in 1877 and was still using private spaces on Tylova Street in the early 1920s. Given the circumstances in the newly founded Czechoslovakia, however, after the construction was completed in 1922 the user changed. Mechanical engineering courses with instruction in Czech and subsequently in German were located here (the civil engineering department was housed in a new building realised on Chodské Square in the years 1915–1920 – see C3–1585).

The architectural concept of the impressive main front on Majerova Street with its robust entrance portico, a richly shaped gable and the application of mansard roofs saw Tremmel draw inspiration from historical architectural styles, mainly Baroque. Compared to the street facades, the courtyard ones with their grids of large windows are clearly plainer, yet also adorned with subtle geometric profiling with running horizontal cornices and lesene frames in the strip between the windows of the elevated ground floor and of the first floor. The core of the two wings of the building is the entrance hall complete with a half-turn staircase. Behind that, a perpendicular court annex with a gymnasium and a drafting room was attached to the main wing with large classrooms. Smaller classrooms and offices, but also laboratories, a library and conference hall were concentrated in the side wing flanking Klatovská Avenue. In the years 1924–1926, the building was complemented by a separate object with engineering workshops (C6–1742) located at the intersection of the streets Majerova and Politických Vězňů.

Between 1952 and 1953, the attic of the school building was adapted into a university dormitory with dozens of bedrooms, rooms for carers and a social hall according to the project by Rudolf Černý. These alterations, which necessitated the establishment of running dormers, had a negative impact on the exterior of the building – the original mansard roof disappeared. The growing number of students and the lack of space for teaching necessitated building interventions in the following years (these were especially numerous new infills and changes to partitions). Not even these adjustments, however, sufficed to provide adequate facilities for the comfortable operation of the school. Therefore, the building facing Náměstí Míru Square (and/or 17.Listopadu Street) was joined by a large three-storey extension with a tower bay based on the design by Bohumír Fridrich and Čestmír Rypl in the years 1957–1960. The fading robust style of Socialist Realism, which drew on historical styles, is mixed here with peculiar traditionalist elements, such as the corner mansard roof referring to the existing building by Tremmel. To make the building with its large windows in subtle frames merge even better with the surrounding houses, the architects applied in the left part of the facade’s shallow triaxialavant-corps with distinctive rounded moulding separating the second and third floor, which in scale continued the neighbouring apartment buildings of the employees of the Joint Stock Company, formerly Škoda Works Pilsen (C6–2269, C6–1609).

The school building complex is currently used by the Secondary School of Engineering and Professor Švejcar Secondary School.

 

Investor

German Technical Schools / Secondary School of (Mechanical) Engineering

 
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