Station 1: Town Hall

At the end of 19th and the beginning of 20th Jablonec witnessed a rapid economic development accompanied by an increased growth of population. The general development was manifested also in the growing need of new public administration buildings. At that time the old Town Hall – the present municipal library on the Dolní Square – could no longer cope with the increasing demands. A design of new premises came into being as early as in 1910. However, World War I thwarted the plans for some time and the issue came to the fore again only in the mid-twenties.

On 10 November 1928, an architectural tender was invited for a new town hall. The invitation specified the location of the building, number and size of offices and other premises. By the deadline, 177 (!) tender proposals were collected from architects from the whole Central Europe. A shortlist was made of twelve of them and the final winner was a young architect Karel Winter from the town of Liberec whose modern functionalist concept after certain corrections complied best with the project specification. The building included the administrative part as well as a cinema, a café on the first floor and a wine bar with a dance floor in the basement.

Construction works were launched in the spring months of 1931 and progressed rapidly. As early as in the summer a building of reinforced concrete started to rise from the ground and at the end of the same year a 51 meter tower was added. The whole building was completed in October 1932, i.e. in less than 20 months. By the end of 1932, the municipal office moved there from the old Town Hall. On 13 January 1933 it hosted the official meeting of the Municipal Board and on 10 February the meeting of the Municipality Council.

The budget of the building amounted to 22.5 mil. CZK and was covered by loans from the municipal pension fund, the regional bank and by a mortgage provided by the Jablonec savings bank. The construction was entrusted to a company established for this specific purpose, including builders Emilian and Emil Herbig, Anton Ullrich and Son and Rella and Nephew who employed some 1900 workers from 135 building companies. The built-up area totals 2.428 m˛.

An important role in the implementation of the project was played by the then progressive and wise Mayor of the town K. R. Fischer. The new town hall is a building which made the Czech interwar architecture rank among the European top. Remarkable is also the general town planning concept of the centre of the town that has been declared an urban conservation zone and the Town Hall itself is a listed building.