The Eastern Railway Administration building, currently serving as the regional outpatient clinic and office building, Bydgoszcz
Narodowy Instytut Dziedzictwa pl

Zdjęcie panoramiczne tej lokalizacji jest niedostępne.

The Eastern Railway Administration building, currently serving as the regional outpatient clinic and office building

Bydgoszcz

photo

One of the grandest, most impressive and well-preserved historical buildings in the city of Bydgoszcz, their importance and functionalities transcending the boundaries of the region. The edifice, incorporating numerous stylistic references to the Dutch Mannerism, contains a representational assembly hall which has been meticulously restored to its original condition.

History

In 1848, the Eastern Railway Administration in Bydgoszcz was formed, its original headquarters being a small building by the New Market Square (Nowy Rynek). Due to the ever-increasing needs of this institution, the Prussian authorities decided that time has come for a new building to be erected. An area located in the vicinity of the railway station was chosen as the site for the contemplated development. In 1885, the design for the building was drawn up by the Berlin-based architectural design studio known as “Ph.Gropius und H.Schmieden”. The actual construction works began one year later and were ultimately completed in 1888. The task of heading the works was entrusted to a building inspector named Bergmann and an architect named Dahms. The end result was a monumental building adorned with a profusion of impressive architectural detailing and decorations intended to emphasize the significance and authority of the institution which inhabited it.

After 1921, the Polish Railway Management was moved to Gdańsk, with only a few branches thereof remaining in Bydgoszcz. From 1945 onwards, the building served the needs of the Transportation Department of the District Management of State Railways (DOKP), the Financial Department of the Polish State Railways (PKP) as well as the Railway Healthcare District Authority. Few major changes were introduced during the post-war period, with the exception of ongoing renovation works and minor adaptations. In the 1990s, the grand assembly hall underwent a comprehensive restoration under the supervision of the monument inspector, with both its original colour scheme, wood panelling and ornate portals being restored to their former glory.

In October 2013, the edifice was entrusted to the Medical College (Collegium Medicum) of the Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toruń, with a view of adapting it to serve as the new dentistry department. Only the premises occupied by the outpatient clinic have not been handed over to the university authorities.

Description

The building forms part of the southern frontage of Dworcowa street, sitting at the top of a riverside escarpment, 300 metres away from the railway station. Designed on an elongated rectangular floor plan, the edifice features four avant-corps projecting from the wings thereof as well as a fifth, front avant-corps. The wings of the building surround a trio of inner courtyards. The main body of the building is covered with tall, gable roof, while the avant-corps feature hip roofs. The front avant-corps is flanked by a pair of towers topped with bulbous cupolas with roof lanterns. The three-storey edifice has a basement as well as a two-storey attic. Inside, the building features mostly brick infill ceilings; vaulted ceiling of the barrel type can be admired inside its hallways, while the main hall is graced by a barrel vault with lunettes. The grand assembly hall features a cloister vault with a flat centre section and lunettes. The walls are lined with red face brick. Some of the outer walls are also adorned with friezes made of yellow clinker brick and green glazed brick, with the rusticated corners of the building, the cornices, portals, decorative surrounds and jamb made of sculpted sandstone. The entire structure was designed in the Historicist style, with numerous references to Dutch Mannerism.

The front (northern) façade follows a 33-axial layout with a trio of avant-corps, featuring a lavish architectural articulation and divisions and enlivened by the presence of a profusion of stonework detailing. The entrances into the building are positioned in the central and side avant-corps. Each of these entrances is framed with a sumptuously decorated portal, with the doorways themselves surrounded by deep reveals topped with conch-shaped aediculae supported by decorative corbels. The tall windows of the assembly hall, spanning two storeys of the building, are framed with decorative surrounds adorned with bossage and keystones extending beyond the outline of the arches. Additional decorative flourishes include sculpted panels with bossage and scrollwork ornaments. Elongated cartouches incorporating the date “1886 - 1889” are positioned on the middle axis of the central section of the façade. The façade avant-corps are crowned with ornamental gables, with the gable of the middle avant-corps being more elaborate in design than its side counterparts. The middle gable, positioned atop a plinth, features a pair of stone obelisks on its sides. The entire gable is flanked by two tall towers crowned with bulbous cupolas topped with octagonal roof lanterns.

The side façades are designed in a manner similar to the front façade, with their rusticated corners and cornices separating the individual storeys. The windows are framed with simplified surrounds, while the top sections of the avant-corps resemble those of their front counterparts. The inner courtyard walls are decorated with geometric friezes made of clinker brick.

The roofs, resting on wooden truss, had originally been clad with roof tiles imported from England; later on, these tiles were replaced by the current galvanised sheet metal cladding. The surfaces of the roofs are punctuated with dormers topped with pyramid-shaped rooflets as well as with triangular skylights.

Inside, the building features a central, main staircase as well as two side staircases. The interior layout follows a two-and-a-half-bay layout, with rooms arranged around hallways which follow the shape of the digit 8. Despite the passage of time, the interiors retain much of their original character, with the preserved layout of the three-bay main hall, the hallways with their groin vaults as well as the representational staircase illuminated by windows glazed with etched glass panes incorporating the motifs of the coats of arms of the cities of Gdańsk and Poznań. The grandest of all interiors is the spacious assembly hall, with its decorative wood panelling reaching up to the height of about 2 metres, topped with a sumptuous cornice, as well as its impressive vaulted ceiling with a vibrant, reconstructed colour scheme. Entrances leading into the assembly hall are framed with monumental portals adorned with decorative corbels, bossage and sculpted herms. Much of the original window and door joinery has likewise been preserved, exhibiting a great variety of shapes and forms.

Limited access to the interiors of the historic building. The section which serves as the outpatient clinic is open between 7 AM and 6 PM.

compiled by Historical Monument and National Heritage Documentation and Popularisation Department of the Kuyavian-Pomeranian Cultural Centre in Bydgoszcz, 26-11-2014 - 8-11-2014.

Bibliography

  • Bergman, Das Eisenbahn-Direktion in Bromberg, “Centralblatt der Bauverwaltung”, Vol. 9, Berlin 1982.
  • G.Meinhardt, Die Eisenbahndirektion Bromberg, [in:] Brombergs Vergangenheit, Wilhelmshaven 1973.
  • I. Jastrzębska Puzowska, P.Winter, Budynek dawnej Dyrekcji Kolei Wschodniej w Bydgoszczy, “Materiały do dziejów kultury i sztuki Bydgoszczy i regionu”, no. 1, Bydgoszcz 1996.
  • Mierzyński J., 125 rocznica powstania dyrekcji kolejowej w Bydgoszczy, “Kronika Bydgoska”, Vol. V (1971-73), Bydgoszcz 1980.
  • Parucka K., Zabytki Bydgoszczy - minikatalog, Bydgoszcz 2008

General information

  • Type: public building
  • Chronology: 1886-1888 r.
  • Form of protection: register of monuments
  • Address: Dworcowa 63, Bydgoszcz
  • Location: Voivodeship kujawsko-pomorskie, district Bydgoszcz, commune Bydgoszcz
  • Source: National Heritage Board of Poland

Licence:

report issue with this site

Geoportal Map

Google Map

See also in this area