Granary, Toruń
Narodowy Instytut Dziedzictwa pl
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A large, well-preserved granary from the Baroque period. Both the load-bearing structure and the décor of its façades are reminiscent of 17th-century buildings surviving in various locations in the city of Toruń, including Podmurna street. Buildings of a similar kind have also survived in Gdańsk, including the granary designed by Abraham van den Blocke (1621). The granary is situated in the area inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage list which also forms part of the monument of history designated as “Toruń - Old and New Town District”.

History

When it was originally erected, the structure of the existing granary building incorporated the vestiges of three medieval gablefront buildings which had originally stood alongside Rabiańska street. These buildings were most likely designed as storage facilities, their form similar to the neighbouring granaries at 19 and 21 Rabiańska street. The existing structure was erected in the first quarter of the 18th century, its construction being a single-stage process. The earlier buildings may have been damaged during the Swedish siege which took place in 1703. During the period when the granary was built, the plot of land on which it stood belonged to Jan Salomon Rosstencher, who died in 1733. The granary was designed as a five-storey structure accompanied by a three-storey utility space in the garret, with each individual storey of the building being a single, open space. The individual storeys of the granary are based on a heavy timber structure, with sturdy posts supporting the beamed ceilings above. From the moment of its construction, the granary has seen only minor alterations over the course of its existence. A massive buttress is believed to have been added at the south-western corner of the building back in the 18th century, resulting in one of the ground-floor windows being blocked. This solution was necessary due to the unstable ground on which the building stood, resulting in uneven subsidence - much like in the case of the so-called Leaning Tower located in the immediate vicinity of the granary. An additional door was added at the ground floor level of the western façade, facilitating access to the basement from street level.

In the second half of the 19th century or in the early 20th century, the eastern part of the granary was adapted to serve as a residential structure, featuring a two-bay interior layout with a hallway. It is from that period that the door on the easternmost axis of the northern façade originates, as do the neighbouring windows on both the ground floor and the first floor. The surface of the wall itself also received a plaster finish. In the 1950s, the façades of the granary were subjected to maintenance works, with their original appearance being restored in the process. At the present stage, adaptation works are underway inside the granary.

Description

The granary is located in the south-western part of the Old Town district. It occupies the western edge of the city block located alongside the city walls which stretch towards the south, circumscribed by the Rabiańska, Św. Ducha, Pod Krzywą Wieżą and Piekary streets.

The building was designed on an elongated trapezium floor plan, its side facing Rabiańska street (side-gabled arrangement). The western wall of the granary adjoins the neighbouring structures. The ground floor section is a single, open space featuring a system of wooden posts supporting a beamed ceiling with crossbeams. In the eastern part of the building, remnants of the layout originating from the period of its conversion into a residential building can still be seen.

The body of the granary is compact in shape. It is a five-storey structure with a basement and a three-storey garret, covered with a gable roof.

The façades feature a uniform arrangement of windows, with decorative rustication applied to the corners of the building. The windows themselves are topped with basket-handle arches and framed with broad plasterwork surrounds with faux keystones and window sills. The western façade follows a five-axial layout with a triangular gable adorned by small, curvilinear volutes and topped with a triangular pediment. The edge of the gable is accentuated by a plasterwork band. The gable wall is punctuated by three rows of windows. A wide double doorway topped with a segmental arch can be found on the second axis of the façade (counting from the northern edge). Right next to it there is a similar, albeit narrower doorway leading into the basement. Both doorways are framed with plain, plaster surrounds.

The side façades follow an eight-axial, five-storey layout, topped with a plasterwork crowning cornice. Doorways topped with basket-handle arches and framed with plaster surrounds are positioned on the first, fourth and eighth axis of the northern façade (counting from the eastern edge). The remaining axes of this façade feature ordinary window openings at all levels.

Limited access to the monument. The structure can be viewed from the outside; adaptation works are underway inside the structure.

compiled by Piotr Dąbrowski, Regional Branch of the National Heritage Board of Poland in Toruń, 14-12-2014.

Bibliography

  • Milanowski K., Zabytkowy spichrz przy ul. Rabiańskiej 23 w Toruniu. Badania Architektoniczne, Toruń 2009, typescript available in the archive of the Municipal Monuments Inspector in Toruń.

General information

  • Type: utility building
  • Chronology: 1. ćw. XVIII w.
  • Form of protection: register of monuments
  • Address: Piekary 2, Toruń
  • Location: Voivodeship kujawsko-pomorskie, district Toruń, commune Toruń
  • Source: National Heritage Board of Poland

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