Klaipėda’s urban development from 1945 to 1990 Tomas S. Butkus, Vaidas Petrulis

Klaipėda’s urban development from 1945 to 1990

Published: 2015

ISBN: 9786099546469

Number of pages: 384

Dimensions: 210 mm x 270 mm

Cover: Paperback/softback

Publisher: VšĮ Vario burnos

Klaipėda’s urban development from 1945 to 1990 has almost no meaningful connection to the earlier time period as far as conditions and means of implementation. Industrial enterprises, land, and other economic resources were nationalized. The entire initiative for urban development was in the hands of government institutions. The most important decisions, having the biggest influence on the city’s expansion and redevelopment, were not made at the lower levels of the chain of command in Klaipėda or Vilnius, but at the highest levels of governmental organs in Moscow. The local government had very little influence on these decisions, especially during the first decades after the war. Massive resources in the 50s and 60s were thrown into the fishing industry, enterprises related to building and maintaining the fishing fleet, and into the industrial expansion of fishing depots, oil depots and coal processing plants. For this reason, Klaipėda became not only a strong industrial center, but also a meaningful port for export services, and an important intermediate point in the Western-Eastern European axis of communication. During the 1960s, the local and republic governments tried to take the initiative into their own hands. Attempting to slow down the growth of local demand and the expansion of industry that ignored capacities, Klaipėda’s growth began to be intentionally limited. For this reason, the postulated model of city expansion at that time, and its most important elements – the linear structural plan and the territorial development to the south – were not fully realized. Nevertheless, the fundamental forces behind the city’s development had been put into effect earlier, so the Lithuanian architects planning Klaipėda faced their greatest challenge in adapting to the environment created by these forces. They had to make planning decisions that took into account the consequences of the establishment of complexes such as the Baltija shipyard, the oil depot, the Western boat repair enterprise and the USSR-GDR international ferry terminal. The systematic creation of a humanized environment only became possible in the 60s and 70s with the founding of professional organizations in Klaipėda that could offer urban development plans that paid attention to local facts and conditions. They were the response to Klaipėda’s earlier development that had been based on a schematic and standardized arsenal of decisions.

Tomas S. Butkus

Tomas S. Butkus (Klaipėda, 1975) is an independent publisher and editor-in-chief of Vario burnos, established in 1992. Since then he has been working in various interdisciplinary fields, participated in international programmes and contests including: Young Writers Meeting in Visby (Gotland, Sweden in 2001), International Writing Program (Iowa City, USA in 2002), Baltic Ring sessions (Finland in 2002-2003), International Young Publisher of the Year award competition (London, UK in 2004) and others. Tomas S. Butkus is also a member of the group of sound and poetry Betoniniai Triušiai (“Concrete Bunnies”). As cultural entrepreneur and book designer he involved in more than 200 local and international publications and projects. His most famous book is “City as Event. Urban study for cultural functions” (2011), and a set of books for children “Boomba Doomba and the Creation of the Universe” (2012) and “Boomba Doomba & the Dangling Bagels Street” (2016).

Other books by Tomas S. Butkus

Vaidas Petrulis

Dr. phil., Senior scientific researcher at Institute of Architecture and Construction of Kaunas University of Technology, Lithuania. Teach different subjects related to the history of architecture and built heritage interpretation. Co-author of books “Architectural heritage of the interwar period in Lithuania: the combination of tangibility and intangibility“ (2015), “Architecture in Soviet Lithuania” (2012). Published a series of articles and conference presentations on the history and heritage of the Modern Movement in Lithuania. Since 2009 develops the project for a digital internet archive of architectural heritage (www.autc.lt). Member of Governing Board of JPI Cultural Heritage: A Challenge for Europe. Member of ICOMOS International Scientific Committee on 20th Century Heritage.


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