Mlýnské nábřeží / Mill Embankment

(Plzeň) Plzeň Doudlevce
GPS: 49.724574, 13.388591

The Mill Embankment along the left bank of the Radbuza River not far from its confluence with the Úhlava River today makes up one of the natural urban axes of the Pilsen district of Doudlevce. It was a location with easy access to water and a former ford, the first mentions of which date back to as early as 1227. This quite likely gave rise to the former village of Doudlevce. The original rural character of the local housing is still clearly visible.

Doudlevce underwent a dramatic demographic transformation during the Industrial Revolution. While in 1870 it was a village of farmers and craftspeople, after the construction of Škoda brickworks in 1873, the railway line to Železná Ruda in 1876, the municipal waterworks under the Homolka hill in 1889 and other industrial plants, a great number of workers and other employees of these factories settled here. After 1900, a new housing development emerged in the area called Vinohrady near the confluence of rivers or in the Malá Strana neighbourhood on a steep hillside between the Homolka-Doudlevce district road and the rapidly developing colony of the detached houses in the Slovany district.

The riverbed and the character of the river were changed by the construction of a weir near the local mill in 1876. In 1910 the weir was encased in concrete. In 1924, when Doudlevce was connected to Pilsen, a decision was made to build a concrete road bridge called Malostranský Bridge, which was to replace the existing wooden bridge near the ford, which predominantly served pedestrians. The bridge was completed in 1929. The new bridge soon began to be used by one of Pilsen’s first bus lines. In 1935 the regulation of the Radbuza River was completed in the whole area. In 1952, the mill was demolished and its drain buried. A hydroelectric power plant was built in 2012 on approximately the same site. Its owner had the nearby farmyard converted into his residence four years later. In addition to the reconstruction of the original cottage and barns, the authors of the project from the Ov-a Studio entered into the historical setting with two interconnected contextual new buildings with the offices and operating facilities of the company.

The right bank of the Radbuza River opposite the Mill Embankment served as a public river bath from 1921 to 1965. In 1996 the idea emerged to use the adjacent area below the waterworks grounds for recreation again and connect it to pedestrian and cycling paths leading through Homolka Park and along the river. In 1999 skateboard half-pipes were installed here and the first adaptations of public space were carried out. After investments in other sports facilities, today's Škoda Sports Park, occupying an area of ​​five hectares, also includes an in-line skating track, mini-golf course, courts and fields for football tennis, street hockey, beach volleyball and streetball, a children’s playground, rope climbing centre and a climbing tower.

In 2005 the owner of the hydroelectric power plant on the weir began to prepare a proposal for the construction of a water sports canal on the meadows between the Radbuza riverbed and the sports centre, which are very valuable from a natural perspective. After modifications to the project, a three-hundred-metre long slalom track forming another river arm would take the form of a natural swift stream. Due to the project proposal, which has been continually rejected by the Environmental Department of the Municipality of Pilsen, the future location of the recreational zone Malostranská jezera (Malostranská Lakes) has been changed to the Pilsen 2 - Slovany district between the sports park and the confluence of the Radbuza and Úhlava Rivers. At the same time, a pair of water areas would be supplied with river water serving as retention tanks. The surrounding area would be converted into a park and fitted with park furniture.


JČ – MK – PK

Sources

  • Škoda sport park, Městský obvod Plzeň 2-Slovany, http://umo2.plzen.eu/zivotvobvodu/skodasportpark/, vyhledáno 26. 1. 2016.
  • Petr Bejm, Sportovní areál v Malostranské ponese dál jméno ŠKODA, Městský obvod Plzeň 2 –Slovany, https://umo2.plzen.eu/zivot-v-obvodu/multimedia/zpravy-z-obvodu/sportovni-areal-v-malostranske-ponese-dal-jmeno-skoda.aspx, vyhledáno 27. 12. 2017.
  • Miroslava Tolarová, Dočkají se vodáci v Plzni svého kanálu? Plzeňský deník.cz, https://plzensky.denik.cz/zpravy_region/dockaji-se-vodaci-v-plzni-sveho-kanalu-20151026.html, vyhledáno 27. 12. 2017.
 
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