Okružní Street

Trail Odonymist
Code Z13
Address Okružní, Středová, Zlín
Public transport Public transport: Jižní Svahy, Kocanda (TROL 6, 7, 8) Česká (TROL 6, 7, 8) Křiby (TROL 6, 7, 8) Slunečná (TROL 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 14) Družstevní (TROL 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 14) Budovatelská (TROL 9, 10, 14)
GPS 49.2402644N, 17.6678189E
49.2356589N, 17.6656486E

The Jižní Svahy housing estate is the largest housing estate built in Zlín after the end of the Second World War. It was built on the southern slopes of the Křiby hills in the northern part of the city. We will have a closer look at this internationally-acclaimed residential complex through its two backbone roads, along which, among other things, the trolleybus lines of Zlín's public transport run. This is Okružní Street (called between 1980 and 1990 SNB, SNB standing for Sbor národní bezpečnost, ie National Security Corps), passing through the housing estate to the north to the localities of Kocanda and Podlesí and from there to the valley of the Fryštácký brook, and Středová Street. Středová crosses Okružní Street near the shopping centre and swimming pool in a west-east direction. In the east, on the edge of the slopes above the Vršava neighbourhood, it is followed by Podlesí Street, while in the south-east it turns into Nivy Street, characterised by detached villas, and the local road Na Výsluní, which leads through the Cigánov neighbourhood back to the city centre in the valley. Both streets were named in 1971.
The Jižní Svahy housing estate is a residential complex with almost 30,000 inhabitants today. It was built in three distinct stages. The first stage was implemented between 1970 and 1980 according to the project of Šebestián Zelina and Jiří Gřegorčík (created in collaboration with Antonín Adamík, František Dohnal, Miroslav Cekota, and Vladimír Vyhňák in 1968); 3,699 dwellings for more than 10,000 inhabitants were built here, in parallel with civic amenities.
We are surrounded by terraced houses, sought-after living respecting the terrain and providing its inhabitants with a great view of the city (Šebestián Zelina in cooperation with Vladimír Vyhňák; the construction of these cooperative houses took place in the years 1971–1978). It is one of the types of houses realised in the first stage of construction.
In Slunečná Street, as well as further west in Družstevní Street and around Luční Street, we find individual high-rise houses on a square plan, the basic type of prefabricated houses in the first stage of the housing estate construction. The basic type of house is present here in three forms, with partially (Družstevní Street) or fully recessed balconies (Slunečná); The newest variant, implemented in Jílová, Polní and Luční streets, is the seven-storey high-rise house TO6B used generally throughout Czechoslovakia. On the western slope of the hill there are five-storey houses with a rectangular floor plan organised around a central corridor (Šebestián Zelina and Jiří Gřegorčík, 1974).
When we cross Okružní Street, we stand directly in front of the Jižní svahy, a fourteen-storey building with an unusual floor plan, responding to undulating terrain and now called the "first segment", with twelve floors of small apartments and two floors dedicated to services (Šebestián Zelina, 1978). Along the northern side of Okružní Street, there are five-storey loggia houses in the shape of the letter "L" with built-in garages, in front of which low three-storey housing blocks were inserted (Šebestián Zelina and Vladimíra Vyháněk, 1972). On the right, in an exposed position, stands the Church of Our Lady Help of Christians, visible from the city centre in the valley, part of the complex of the youth leisure centre run by the Salesians (Jan Kovář, 2003). A swimming pool was built in 2011 just before the intersection with Středová Street.
Although the new construction system, NKS-G, was used in the housing estate from the beginning, the designers drew on the local tradition of the city in greenery with respect to topography and ingenious use of the terrain, as well as the visual character of Zlín, and continued experiments with standardised construction of residential buildings. The projects were created directly in Zlín by the Research Institute of Civil Engineering in Prague, Gottwaldov workplace. A precast manufacturing plant was set up on the edge of the construction site, which ceased operations after 1980; it was used sporadically until 1992. Eventually, part of the complex was converted into a service house. It is here, from the intended and as yet unrealised square, where the service house, swimming pool, and temporary buildings now stand, that Středová Street turns towards the east. After 1980, the construction of the Jižní svahy estate entered its second stage, designed for twice the population and carried out to the east of the existing housing estate. Its main designer was František Balajka, the architects were Dušan Živocký and Miloš Totušek. 
The second stage of construction took place under the auspices of the Building Constructions Ostrava. The nationwide required type of residential houses OP 1.11, which was only slightly adjusted in Zlín, was used as basis for the design here. This, together with the lack of design ambition, the higher density of buildings and the smaller share of greenery, was reflected in the different character of the newer part of the Southern Slopes and the quality of living itself. The dominant feature of the district is again a high-rise building, the "second segment" (completed in 1983), copying a building five years older. The second stage construction of the Southern Slopes again uses individual high-rise houses on a square plan reaching twelve floors, located not only along Středová Street, but also around other main roads, similar but smaller houses (up to 8 floors), terraced houses (4, 6 and 8 storeys high), which form semi-enclosed courtyards, and family terraced houses.
The third stage of the construction of Jižní svahy is the completion of places planned before 1989 and in the peripheral parts of the housing estate: especially in Podlesí (completion after 1997) and in its northern part (Zelinova street, realised after 2000). Between Středová, Na Honech I and Podlesí II streets, the existing construction was made more compact in two stages (1990s and after 2000). The third stage has been rightly described as unconceptual, detached from the original project and the character of the Zlín development from the mid-20th century.