Siddhesh Joshi


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Country  Czech Republic
Elevation  230 m
Area  102.8 km²
University  Tomas Bata University in Zlin

Zlin ( German: ) is a city in the Zlin Region, southeastern Moravia, Czech Republic, on the Drevnice River. The development of the modern city is closely connected to the Bata Shoes company and its social scheme, developed after the First World War.


Map of Zlin

Architecture in Zlin

The citys architectural development was a characteristic synthesis of two modernist urban utopian visions: the first inspired by Ebenezer Howards Garden city movement and the second tracing its lineage to Le Corbusiers vision of urban modernity. From the very beginning Bata pursued the goal of constructing the Garden City proposed by Ebenezer Howard. However, the shape of the city had to be modernized so as to suit the needs of the company and of the expanding community. Zlins distinctive architecture was guided by principles that were strictly observed during its whole inter-war development. Its central theme was the derivation of all architectural elements from the factory buildings. The central position of the industrial production in the life of all Zlin inhabitants was to be highlighted. Hence the same building materials (red bricks, glass, reinforced concrete) were used for the construction of all public (and most private) edifices. The common structural element of Zlin architecture is a square bay of 20x20 feet (6.15x6.15 m). Although modified by several variations, this high modernist style leads to a high degree of uniformity of all buildings. It highlights the central and unique idea of an industrial garden city at the same time. Architectural and urban functionalism was to serve the demands of a modern city. The simplicity of its buildings which also translated into its functional adaptability was to prescribe (and also react to) the needs of everyday life.

The urban plan of Zlin was the creation of Frantisek Lydie Gahura, a student at Le Corbusiers atelier in Paris. Le Corbusiers inspiration was evident in the basic principles of the citys architecture. On his visit to Zlin in 1935, where he was appointed to preside over the selective procedure for new apartment houses. Le Corbusier also received a commission for creating the plan for further expansion of the city and the company. His plan represented a paradigm shift from his earlier conceptions of urban design. Here he abandoned an anthropomorphic, centralized city model in favor of the linear city format. The change in Le Corbusiers thinking was also reflected by the abandonment of the a redents residential pattern in favor of free-standing slab blocks. His Zlin plan, however, was never fully adopted.

  • The Villa of Tomas Bata was an early architectural achievement in Zlin (the construction was finished in 1911). The buildings design was carried out by the famous Czech architect Jan Kotera, professor at Pragues Academy of Fine Arts. After its confiscation in 1945 the building served as a Pioneers house. Being returned to Tomas J. Bata, the son of the companys founder, the building houses the headquarters of the Thomas Bata Foundation.
  • Bata’s Hospital in Zlin was originally founded in 1927 and quickly developed into one of the most modern Czechoslovak hospitals. The original architectural set up was designed by Frantisek Lydie Gahura.
  • The Grand Cinema (Velke kino) was built in 1932 and became the largest cinema in Europe (2580 seated viewers) in its time. The cinema also boasted the largest movie screen in Europe (9 x 7 meters). This technological marvel was designed by the Czech architects Miroslav Lorenc (1896–1943) and Frantisek Lydie Gahura (1896–1958).
  • The Monument of Tomas Bata was built in 1933 by Frantisek Lydie Gahura. The original purpose of the building was to commemorate the achievements of Bata before his unexpected death in a plane crash in 1932. The building itself is a constructivist masterpiece. It has served as the seat of the Philharmonic Orchestra of Bohuslava Martinu since 1955.
  • Batas Skyscraper (Batuv mrakodrap, Jednadvacitka) was built as the headquarters for the worldwide Bata organization. Designed by Vladimir Karfik, the huge building was erected in 1936-1939. It included a room-sized elevator housing the office for the boss, comfortably furnished – with a sink, a telephone and air conditioning. When it was built it was the tallest Czechoslovak building (77.5 m). After a costly reconstruction in 2004 it became the seat of the Zlin Region and the headquarters of the tax office.

Zlin today

Zlin is now the county seat. The city is home to the Tomas Bata University in Zlin, which opened in 2001. With approximately 12,000 students, it ranks as a medium-sized Czech university, and offers courses in technology, economics, humanities, arts and health care. As with other larger cities there are a lot of shopping malls. There is a hockey club, PSG Zlin, which plays in the top Czech league, and a football club, FC Fastav Zlin, playing in the Czech second league. The buildings of the former Bata company have either been renovated, abandoned or demolished.


Zlins ice hockey team, PSG Zlin, plays in the Czech Extraliga and has won two national titles, most recently in 2014. The football team, FC Fastav Zlin, plays in the second level of Czech professional football, the Fotbalova narodni liga, having played in the top-level Czech First League sporadically since 1993. The city also has teams in other sports including volleyball, basketball, Czech handball and rugby.

Public transport

Public transport in Zlin has a long history. In 1899 Zlin was connected with to the railway network, helping its expansion. In the 1920s local passenger transportation started to operate. Later, in 1939 the town council decided to build three trolleybus routes, numbered lines A, B and C. New trolleybus lines were finished in 1944, after the construction proceeding during the Nazi occupation. Through the times, Zlins public transport, now owned by DSZO (Zlin & Otrokovice Transportation Company), was one of the fastest-growing public transportation networks in the Czech Republic.

The city is currently served by 13 bus routes and 13 trolleybus routes, and also railway services on line 331, which runs from Otrokovice (located on the international corridor) to Vizovice. There are nine stations on this line within the city of Zlin, the largest of which is Zlin stred (Zlin central).

International relations

Zlin is twinned with:

Other forms of cooperation and city friendship similar to the twin city programmes exist:

  • Turin, Italy


Dj tommy rogers & jerry joxx in zlin at star club flip zlin 11 4 2014

Majales utb 2010 tomas bata university in zlin myzlin com


Zlin in the past, History of Zlin

The first record of Zlin dates back to 1322, when it served as a craft guild center for the surrounding area of Moravian Wallachia. Zlin became a town in 1397. During the thirty years war, the residents of Zlin, along with people from the whole Wallachian region, led an uprising against the Habsburg monarchy.

Zlin in the past, History of Zlin

Until the late 19th century, the town did not differ much from other settlements in the surrounding area, with the population not surpassing 3,000. Though historically associated with Moravian Wallachia, Zlin stands at the corner of three historical Moravian cultural regions; Moravian Wallachia, Moravian Slovakia and Hanakia.


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