High-rise Apartment Buildings no. 1, no. 2, no. 3

Date 1963– (P) –1967 (R)
Architect Adolf Zikmund
Code Z15
Address Bratří Jaroňků 4063 4063, Zlín

In 1959, a master plan for the reconstruction of the city centre was approved, which was elaborated by the Regional Project Institute under the leadership of architect Eduard Staša. In addition to the effort to solve the lack of apartments, the plan envisaged the construction of "purpose buildings of urban and extra-urban significance", such as the Workers' Theatre. Murzínova Street (today Dlouhá Street) was to be rebuilt gradually, and the existing spaces were to be filled with cooperative houses. However, many of the planned new buildings did not come to be realised (for example, the building of the school of arts and crafts by Šebestián Zelina, which was supposed to stand on the corner of Štefánikova and Osvoboditelů streets).
One of the most significant urban interventions based on this master plan was the construction of three high-rise buildings. These completed the compositional axis on Stalinova třída (today třída Tomáše Bati), which was created after 1945 by the construction of the tower and Morýs houses. The author of the high-rise buildings was architect Adolf Zikmund, a graduate of Prague's UMPRUM under professor Adolf Benš. He came to Gottwaldov after the war to the already nationalised Baťa company. In the 1950s and 1960s he worked at Stavoprojekt first as a regular architect, later as head of the studio. In 1966 he helped establish the Office of the Chief Architect of the Gottwaldov agglomeration, where he worked until 1986.
The high-rise buildings stand on a slightly sloping terrain between Kvítková and Stalinova streets (today třída Tomáše Bati). The fifteen-storey buildings are situated in relation to one another so as to create a letter Z when seen from above. There are a total of 103 apartments in both towers, a corridor with a staircase, and two lifts are placed in the central part between them. The top floor has a covered terrace in the first tower, and a receding floor with studio apartments and studios for artists in the second one. In addition to the glazed corridor, the façade is also enlivened by subtle balconies. On the south side, the house is partly sunken with a basement. The main entrance is on the north side. A free parterre with significantly slanted columns connects to Ševcovská Street, which is perpendicular to Morýs Houses. The fact that pedestrians can move freely through the parterre toward the centre of the city is one of the major qualities of the high-rise buildings.
The foundation structures are reinforced concrete; all supporting pillars, walls, beams, and slabs of the ground floor are made of monolithic reinforced concrete. Starting from the first floor, the building uses a structural panel system, whose dimensional modules follow on from the G57 panel house and its variant SG60. 
Each floor offers 8 residential units, while those in one tower are shifted in height in comparison to the other tower by half a floor due to the effect of the terrain. In one tower there is a 4-room, a 3-room, a 2-room, and single-room apartment on each floor with service rooms, kitchen and dining area. The second tower has service rooms located in the corridor, so there are two 3-room, one 2-room, and one single-room apartment on every floor.
Each unit has windows facing in two directions, and a balcony. For each apartment there is a cellar, a pram storage room, a workshop, and the children's clubhouse which is accessible from the vestibule. The entrance area was divided into a part for residents and a vestibule with permanently accessible door bells. A separate building housing a common room, garages, and a waste room is available for house No. 1. 
Special attention was paid to the materials of the façades; the panels were to be lined with glass mosaic on the outside, and the plinth of the building was to be clad in black stoneware, etc. The houses were recently renovated, insulated with an ochre façade. The windows were replaced, the new ones having wings of different proportions. The original typical balcony railings are preserved only at one of the houses. In the entrance hall, the mosaic tiles on the walls and round columns have been preserved, but the original mail boxes and door bells have been removed.
The construction of high-rise buildings was a media-watched event. For example, we know from period press that at the beginning of 1964 the works had to be interrupted due to low temperatures, and that the MB120 crane with a load capacity of up to 7.5 tons and a height reach of 98 metres was used on the construction site. 
The almost 45-metre houses designed by Adolf Zikmund stand on the site of former family houses, gardens, and orchards, and significantly changed the appearance of the eastern part of the city. Although these are large-capacity panel buildings, their volume does not seem massive. The well-thought-out layout, the transparent corridor section in the centre and the free parterre represent high-quality architectural production of the 1960s.