The post-war fate of the inhabitants of Osiedle Młodych on
Praga Południe in Warsaw " Oral History Archive.
Cultural Heritage of Warsaw
the project is co-financed by the capital city of Warsaw
Project "" Homeless Lovers Estate "
The project "" Housing of homeless lovers "- the post-war fate of the inhabitants of Osiedle Młodych in Praga Południe in Warsaw" was born out of the need to create an archive of Oral History - the history of the formation, construction and formation of the community of Osiedle Młodych - called "Osiedle Bezdomnych Kochanków" - which was built, it was formed in the second half of the 1950s in Warsaw. It is implemented thanks to the support of the Capital City of Warsaw in the grant competition "Cultural Heritage of Warsaw"
The estate, today administered by the "Szaserów" Housing Cooperative
fits into the post-war history of Praga Południe and Warsaw.
The project of the Piwnica Poetycka ENS Foundation for Culture and National Heritage in cooperation with the Housing Cooperative "Szaserów" is an attempt to record the history captured in sound, image and text, noting the fate and life of people who made up the current WARSAW, they themselves initiated the initiative of building housing for young people in Praga South. These are statements of people of various professions, backgrounds, accounts of the generation "which is leaving".
The project of recording, preserving the memory of people who built the community and culture of Praga Południe since the late 1950s and the creation of the Oral History Archive of the Housing Estate with over 60 years of tradition of existence was born as a result of several years of cooperation between the Piwnica Poetycka ENS Foundation and Spółdzielnia
Residential "Szaserów" and from 2019 co-creating the KREDENS POD OKNAMI housing estate club, an Intergenerational Place of Local Activity.
It is about creating and strengthening the "Little Homeland" community in Praga
South in Osiedle Młodych, is a project born on the initiative of two artists from the Osiedle residents who, in cooperation with the Management of the housing cooperative "Szaserów", owners of local confectioneries, in 2013 started symphonic concerts and activities for children and their grandparents on the square under the oak trees in one of the estate's courtyards .
This is a series of concerts "Under the Window" for the elderly, sick and less well off. Then the trial process began
opening other residents of the estate to those we have "behind the wall". The "Nasz Park" estate called by the inhabitants (it is green and quiet, with old beautiful lime trees and oaks "with over 60 years of tradition of existence) is inhabited and inhabited by many artists, painters, architects, people
many professions related to education and science "today, more than half of the population of a few thousand people are old people, locked in their homes and the past.
The initiative to record their accounts, stop time and their lives inscribed in the post-war history of Warsaw was born out of
the need to share the joy of life, love for music, art, love for other people, the need to practice your acting profession in its purest form and passion
Piwnica poetycka FOUNDATION
Project "" Homeless Lovers Estate "
the post-war fate of the inhabitants of Osiedle Młodych in Praga Południe in Warsaw "was born out of the need to create an archive of Oral History - the history of the formation, construction and formation of the community of Osiedle Młodych - called" Osiedle Bezdomnych Kochanków "- which was built in the second half of the 1950s It is implemented thanks to the support of the Capital City of Warsaw in the grant competition "Cultural Heritage of Warsaw"
The estate, today administered by the "Szaserów" Housing Cooperative, is part of the post-war history of Praga Południe and Warsaw.
The project of recording, preserving the memory of people who built the community and culture of Praga Południe since the late 1950s and the creation of the Oral History Archive of the Housing Estate with over 60 years of tradition of existence was born as a result of several years of cooperation between the Piwnica Poetycka ENS Foundation and the Housing Cooperative "Szaserów" and co-creation from 2019 of the KREDENS POD OKNAMI housing estate club, an Intergenerational Local Activity Center.
It is a daily creation and strengthening of the "Mała Ojczyzna" community in Praga Południe in Osiedle Młodych. It is a project born on the initiative of two artists from the estate who, in cooperation with the Management Board of the Housing Cooperative "Szaserów", the owners of local confectioneries, in 2013 began symphonic concerts and activities for children and their grandparents at "Pod Dębami Square" in one of the estate's courtyards. It is a series of concerts "Under the Window" for the elderly, sick and less well off. Then the process of trying to open other residents of the estate to those we have "behind the wall" began.
The "Nasz Park" estate, called by the residents, is green and quiet, with old beautiful lime trees and oaks "with over 60 years of tradition of existence, is inhabited and inhabited by many artists, painters, architects, people of many professions related to education and science. Today, more than half of the community of several thousand people they are old people, locked in their homes and past.
The desire to stop time and their lives inscribed in the post-war history of Warsaw was born from
the need to share the joy of life, love for music, art, love for other people, the need to practice your acting profession in its purest form and passion, social activist
The second half of the 1950s ... 10 years after the war, the thaw after the Stalinist period begins. Young workers employed in Warsaw workplaces treat the world around them seriously, socialism seems to them to be the future: after all, it is supposed to satisfy the most important needs of the working people. And there is something more important, even in communism, than a house or a flat? However, they hear in party committees and trade unions that although hard work is underway on construction sites, there will be no flats for them for the next 10–15 years.
So they decide to take the matter into their own hands. "Sztandar Młodych", by Ewa Wacowska and Edward Goskrzyński, throws up the slogan "Let's build ourselves". The Fantazja project - the reality OSIEDLE YOUNG. Date? Obvious. October 1956, the warmest wind of renewal blows ... The echo of the article is powerful, the young people from WFM, FSO, Waryński, Róża Luxemburg - the largest workplaces in Warsaw at that time - came forward. Nobody knows how, but everyone is ready: alone after work, on Sundays, whenever you can build your own roof. On what terms, for whom. Of which? And where?
The authors of the article (you wanted it, Grzegorz Dyndało) must answer these questions. They go to the Central Committee of the Polish United Workers' Party three times, a project is finally being developed: the estate will be built by the Robotnicza Spółdzielnia Mieszkaniowa, whose members can only be young workers of workplaces. Each of them will contribute a workload corresponding to the monthly salary. And local materials will be used for construction.
Good right? The locals, when it is not known where the construction will be ... On December 8, 1956, 74 first members of RSM "Osiedle Młodych" meet at the founding meeting, elect editor Edward Goskrzyński as president of the cooperative (salary: social work plus 500 zlotys for phone calls and taxis). This one goes on a query in search of land. One of the most important land owners in the capital is the Ministry of National Defense. So he goes there ... And it turns out that he hits well, because the military has just cut the funds for the accompanying facilities. Although there is consent from the central authorities to build a hospital of the Ministry of National Defense at Szaserów Street, the plans (unfortunately) include a housing estate for hospital employees. Thus, the military has 4 hectares of land for housing construction to sell. A real treasure. And next to it, there are more hectares of fields where cows and horses graze, but there is also grain, which is important for the country's food supply. However, the management of "Osiedle Młodych" manages to hunt down this area - the land is taken over by the State Treasury, and the farmer is displaced (for the sake of conscience, let's say that in the new place he gets no worse land).
This is how we have already outlined the area of the estate romantically called "Osiedle Bezdomnych Kochanków". The name, however, is not accepted, because in prudish socialism, there are no lovers, only socialist families, or individuals working for a homeland that is moving towards communism. Today, the remnants of the "lovers" is the street Romeo and Juliet ... The original name of "Osiedle Młodych" is returning, drawn between today's Wspólna Droga, Szaserów, Szklane Domów and Garwolińska streets. 8 hectares, where the estate is to be built according to the guidelines for the second development zone, i.e. the buildings are to be two-story, with two commercial and service pavilions and a kindergarten. There may be 800 apartments on the estate, for a maximum of 3,000 people.
How to build? From local materials ... So from clay? There is such an idea. In Germany and Romania, it is even used quite often. In Poland, an "experimental" two-storey building made of this material was built - in Malichy near Warsaw. So it seems that this will be the future of "Osiedle Młodych". However, the commissioned surveying work is disappointing: there is no clay in the excavations! There is sand that can be used in the production of concrete materials, but there is no clay! What to do? A new idea emerges: a field factory for cement bricks and chip-and-gypsum blocks will be built on the estate, the whole will be completed with concrete elements. And the brick is "obtained" from the demolition of former German forts in Kostrzyn on the Oder.
The estate is being built on fallow land and arable fields. There is no water supply, no sewage system, no gas. Central heating boiler rooms and an electric line have to be designed. None of the state-owned (and there was no other) design offices want to do it quickly. Black despair. Enthusiasm crashes against the wall of everyday life once again ...
So the cooperative sets up its own design office. It is headed by a young engineer at the time, Stefan Ciechanowicz - the architect of the experimental building in Malice, about which we wrote above. The team appoints architects who are also employees of design offices or companies that have a decisive influence on the so-called implementation arrangements. This allows you to design an entire estate within 6 months! Engineers Tadeusz Kobylański and Stefan Ciechanowicz (who lives in the estate to this day) and their team will receive an award from the Town Planning and Architecture Committee in 1957.
On June 15, 1957, in the foundations of the "point building" with the current address of Szklane Domów 7b, the vice-president of the cooperative editor Ewa Wacowska, accompanied by the Minister of Construction, the Mayor of Warsaw and other dignitaries, solemnly places the foundation act of the housing estate under construction and lays the cornerstone. A metal, brazed box, which also hides a copy of the "Banner of the Young", is still under this block.
Construction is underway. First, two-story blocks at 26 and 26a Garwolińska Street. Then the next ones, which are created faster, because the home-made method of implementation luckily loses to reality. There is a shortage of building materials, there are no legal regulations, investment managers change (three times in a short period of time), and in the end, President Goskrzyński himself has "enough". Resigns.
Low building under construction in 1957 ...
And since the party authorities are beginning to look more favorably at the housing cooperative movement that is emerging throughout the country, so the "Osiedle Młodych" is given a completely different status, a bit state, but with good results.
Well, the new president, Eng. Tadeusz Bilewicz receives the right to resign from building the estate using the economic method and eagerly uses it: the construction is entrusted to professionals from KBM Warszawa Praga. The problems with obtaining building materials, machines, and home furnishings are ending (we take the measure of those times). In 25 months, 27 buildings with nearly 780 apartments are built. The history records the first tenants: in the building at Garwolińska 26a, the first keys are given to citizens, founding members: Latoszek, Osiekowicz, Balana, Dworecki, Wesołowski, Jakubiak and Tłustochowicz. Then more. In January 1959, 67 members of the cooperative (i.e. young workers from Warsaw factories) live on the estate, and new buildings are erected every month.
And then ... And then in 1961 the cooperative gets "its" land for perpetual use. For the next 55 years, only one more building will be built here, in 1966. The "young workers" of Warsaw factories get married, their children are born, the buildings are aging, maybe even faster than their peer blocks in other housing estates, because for years they have not been maintained and renovated on an ongoing basis. The "Osiedle Młodych" cooperative is growing and budding, having less and less in common with the roots from which it grew.
And about 1,500 people live "in the fatherland". In 2004, they leave the "Osiedle Młodych" cooperative, now calling their mother nursery "Szaserów". Recently, it was entered into the register of monuments, residents laugh that the age of the main tenants was probably taken into account. Over 20 percent of them have already exceeded 80, over 60 percent. it is older than the first buildings of the estate ... A specific area, huge for the capital city's conditions, where the inhabitants of 28 low-rise buildings usually maintain as much as 8 hectares of land. You have to flex quite financially to maintain it.
Greenery gives the estate a lot of charm.
But from the beginning of this text, we said that there is a housing estate different from all the others ... If it is bad (as when it was difficult to start construction), now they can use unconventional methods. It was bad, in general, until 2010: until then, the new cooperative entity had no luck in choosing hosts who would cope with the enormity of tasks. There was no agreement between the Supervisory Board, the Management Board and the cooperatives themselves as to the choice of the path. It was known that you need to renovate it quickly, but for what ?! What methods of obtaining money? What first? And there was quarrel after quarrel. No Supervisory Board has completed its term of office, no management board has survived long enough to implement its vision.
In 2010, probably everyone was fed up with it and ... the authorities that survived their terms of office were finally formed and did what the tenants were waiting for. The estate was modernized. All buildings were insulated, their facades were changed, electrical installations and heat distribution centers were replaced, such dangerous gas stoves were removed, all staircases were renovated and painted, all within a short period of 6 years.
- In the years 2010–2015 we spent over PLN 21 million on repairs and modernizations - Krzysztof Jurewicz, president of the board of SM Szaserów from 2010 tells "Mieszkańc".
- the cooperative summer renovation fund. Where did we get this money from? From various sources. We used, among other things, a thermal modernization loan from a special fund established by the Council of Ministers for buildings erected before 1961 (giving a special additional bonus for the work performed). The loan does not charge the residents' mortgage, the renovation fund is the pledge. Through "Veolia" we used the so-called Swiss funds that support the modernization of heating networks. With the consent of the members of the cooperative, we sold two plots belonging to us: "Biedronka" was built on one, and the developer is just finishing the construction of a residential building on the other. All this made it possible to perform such a huge scope of renovation works without any risk to solvency and without losing financial liquidity. Throughout this period and now, the financial situation of the Cooperative is stable.
- Nothing, I repeat, nothing in the cooperative will succeed if the authorities - the Supervisory Board and the Management Board - will not cooperate with each other and if they will not have support members of the cooperative. We succeeded, because we are going one way from the very beginning - says vice-president Ewa Łukszo . - In 2010, Ms Magdalena Dobrzyńska became the head of the Supervisory Board, a new Management Board was formed and slowly, with the initially considerable distrust of the cooperatives, things started to settle down. Now, in the Management Board, we have a completely different comfort of work, because - I think - we have proved that we work for the good of this estate. We have renovated the buildings, we care for greenery (we have over 550 trees alone!), For these large, beautiful areas, without burdening the residents' budgets. Currently, Mr. Andrzej Rajkiewicz is at the head of the Supervisory Board and with him we are starting new projects - including the senior project.
Piwnica poetycka FOUNDATION
Friendly to seniors
In 2005, the Seym passed the so-called the senior act. It obliges the government to monitor the situation of elderly people, which is to counteract their exclusion and stimulate actions improving their situation in society.
Vice-president Ewa Łukszo:
- We accepted the adoption of this law with joy. We live with the affairs of the inhabitants of our estate, and it is specific. 65 percent out of 1,500 inhabitants over 50, 23 percent is between the ages of 61–80, 22 percent. he is older than eighty. Many of these people built their own apartments or helped furnish them with their own hands. So they are extremely related to their habitat. It is not for them that they should move to their children when they cannot walk, or to a building with an elevator in another neighborhood. Such a move is emotionally out of the question. Here you can best see how the saying that old trees do not go overboard ...
Inspector for membership and housing Natalia Lewkowicz:
- In short, this estate must become friendlier for so many seniors living here. We decided to approach it professionally, after identifying the real needs. The new Chairman of the Supervisory Board, Mr. Andrzej Rajkiewicz, in March this year. contacted the Institute of Social Policy of the University of Warsaw, and as a result, a decision was made to collaborate with research. They will be carried out by a team in the estate: professor Barbara Szatur-Jaworska, Barbara Rysz-Kowalczyk and dr Aleksandra Zubrzycka-Czarnecka. There will be a balance of seniors' needs, a map of support institutions, diagnosis of the state of care, and most importantly - a plan of corrective actions. Research work has already started. The first interviews with our seniors will be conducted by the Cotopaxi Film Studio Association, and the next internships will be conducted by UW students. Documentation of these conversations / consultations will form the basis for work on the balance of seniors' needs.
President Krzysztof Jurewicz:
- Without waiting for the results of these studies, we take the obvious. We organize outdoor events and picnics for our seniors to make their lives more pleasant. They take the form of, for example, concerts under the windows, where residents listen to music from their balconies, or sitting on benches, on their chairs. We establish contacts with non-governmental organizations that have interesting offers for people aged 50+ and present our residents with opportunities that they can take advantage of. Many of the inhabitants have problems with walking and heart efficiency. Although there is no place for elevators in two-story buildings, which would make it easier for them to move around, we want to install internal cranes, although in the few 4-story buildings that we have in the estate. There are opportunities there, we will apply for funds (also European) for this purpose. The cooperative took the floor as part of the public consultation on Warsaw's development strategy until 2030, reporting the problem of retrofitting residential buildings erected in the 1950s and 1960s with elevators, when there were no relevant technical requirements yet.