During the renovation work on Marszałkowska Street, workers dug up the foundations of the pre-war tenement houses. The cellars are the only remains of the buildings that once stood on the symbolic boundary between the saloon and the commerce.
Pre-war Warsaw does not forget itself. In Marszałkowska, between Plac Bankowy and Królewska, work is underway to rebuild the road. A new footpath and bike path will be built. The criterion is to be worthy of the twenty-first century. At the moment, he remembers the nineteenth century. At the end of the Iron Gate Square, the stone foundations of the old houses were revealed.
– What is most evident are the exposed remains of a pre-war house on Plac Żelazna Bramy 2. A little further south, we also discovered parts of a tenement house that had the address of Plac Żelazna Bramy 1 before the war. Archaeologists work there – Jakub Debalski, spokesman for the Municipal Roads Authority, who renovated the street.
The tenement house was designed in the 19th century by Antonio Corazzi
Title data can also be read from comparing today’s map to pre-war versions, which Provided by the city office. The titles of the monuments are also confirmed by Ryszard Mączewski, the best specialist in identifying pre-war buildings, a Varsawian scholar from the Museum of the Warsaw Uprising and founder of the Warszawa1939.pl Foundation.
On the institution’s website you can read that on 2 elazna Bramy square there was a tenement house designed by not just anyone – Antonio Corazzi himself, an Italian architect who was responsible for planning the nearby Bankowy and Teatralny squares. He still considers the building of the Grand Theater his greatest work. The two-storey house whose cellars can be seen today was built in 1828-29. Two decades later, it was built by Andrzej Gołoński. He was also responsible for the tenement house which was stuck to one side of the main building.
It is possible that among the surviving foundations are also the remains of a dwelling-house at No. 4, which once stood on the corner with Chabia. Not much is known about her. In turn, in No. 1 (it is already a little further, to the south), a small part of the basement of the building, built in the same “2” years (hence the suspicion that Corazzi was also of his design), is revealed.
Between the bustle of the bazaar and the garden salon
Before the war, the whole area was the border of two worlds. To the east, Saxon Park and the elite regulars. To the west, the then-capital shopping center’s collective clientele—it consisted of Hale Mirowskie (today they stand on the same site) and Gościnny Dwór (defunct).
These residential houses stood symmetrically on both sides of the square that was still in front of the Iron Gate Square. This area was formerly excluded from the Saxon Garden. Who knows, maybe the idea was to separate the huge debt coming from the market from the elegant world that was a Saxon garden – Ryszard Mączewski wonders. – But it cannot be ruled out that the intrigues were developed for purely mercantile reasons – he keeps it.
Farsavianistas were surprised that the remains of Old Warsaw were so shallow, right below the asphalt. – It seems that the foundation for the road should be thicker and more decent, – he notes.
Work is scheduled to resume next week
What about excavated cellars? Farsafian’s feelings are unlikely to affect the course of action.
– I expect that we will resume work in this place next week, after the governor’s decision regarding the handling of this discovery. At the moment, this is not a big problem, because the contractor is simply working elsewhere on the construction site – this sums up Jakub Dybalski from ZDM.
Main image source: Mateusz Szelter, tvnwarszawa.pl