PKiN (again!)

Poland’s foreign minister has said the nation should knock down its socialist realist symbol, the Palace of Culture in Warsaw.

Radek Sikorski says Warsaw should tear down the Palace of Science and Culture – a gift from Stalin in the 1950s – which still dominates the Warsaw skyline, just as Germans destroyed the Berlin Wall 20 years ago.

In Sikorski’s opinion, the Palace of Science and Culture is a symbol of communism. Therefore, its demolition should also be symbolic, as was in case with the Russian Orthodox Church in Warsaw, which was demolished when Poland regained independence in 1918 after 120 years of partition.

PKiN, on shaky ground?

Here we go again! Will this debate never end? For as long as I’ve been here there has been a constant back and forth debate about whether the Palace of Culture and Science (PKiN) should be destroyed or not. For the same time there have been assorted options put forth as to what to do around the PKiN, assuming it remains standing. The net result is that nothing at all has been done to either the palace or the vast area surrounding it and so we’re living with a gradually deteriorating mess right in the heart of the city. I’m now at the point of saying “Make your minds up and do something, for goodness sake!”.

The PKiN is massive with internal volume of over 800,000 cubic metres and including 14,000 m2 of office space. It is in poor condition and so to keep it means spending a large sum in renovation costs. To remove it means spending a larger sum in demolition costs plus the cost of putting up something else to take its place. All this debate about whether to keep it or not is just the governments way of avoiding having to spend anything at all. They’re not even attempting to sell the thing for 1 PLN to a private developer to allow someone who will have the desire and funds to make it happen. Shame on them!

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4 thoughts on “PKiN (again!)

  1. I wrote once that I like PeKIN, so I’m against!
    Maybe journalists wrong interpreted his/Sikorski’s words (like with some of his words concerning Russia)?

  2. a gift from Stalin…

    I can also give you a gift. I’ll tell you what it’s going to be, then buy it, no matter if you want it or not, bring it to your house with my tipsy and vociferous pals, we break a few items, cut the ribbon and go away leaving your flat ready to be done up.

    There’s no analogy between the Berlin Wall and PKiN. The former had to divide the wall, those tho wanted to cross it risked their lives. PKiN is not a harmful place in that way.

    What Poles did in 1918 was just a vengeance and deserves contempt. Just a pointless getting back on the oppressors.

    It won’t that easy to do anything about the building, pulling it down is as far as I guess impossible – it has a status of historical building. It should stay there anyway – as a symbol of the past, but not necessarily of the evil.

  3. This is as much comunist symbol as the symbol of youth for many of us. When I was a kid, it was SOMETHING to participate in Palac Mlodziezy classes. There was Teleranek on TV every Sunday (besides Stan Wojenny), and unique kids from PKIN Palac Mlodziezy were hosts there. My daughter is attending choreography classes there, and although it is nothing special in today’s world I like to be part of it. PKIN is a symbol of my growing up, of my youth, of the world that is not existing now.

  4. It must be saved! Even better if it’s eventually surrounded by taller buildings. Bartek, maybe a better analogy with Berlin is the Palast der Republick. Most “Osties” are incensed that it was torn down. And I agree. There are similarities with the Wall even: talk to people there and most agree too much was destroyed. Now they have tours in which you must use a GPS to find remaining bits. Tragic. Berlin fucked up and they now know it ( a little late.)

    Coming from a county’s perspective where we remember history for about 5 minutes, look at how we make decisions! The WW2 generation is almost gone. Who else can tell us what happened?

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