Gdansk technical University is one of the oldest in Poland, it is an autonomous state university. It comprises 9 faculties with over 25,000 students on full-time and part-time engineering and master's studies. The university employs almost 2500 people, including about 1200 academic teachers.
The symbol of the university is the monumental Main Building, erected at the beginning of the XXth century, designed in the Dutch Neo-Renaissance style by Albert Carsten, an outstanding architect and later university professor. Under the supervision of Professor Carsten, the Machine Laboratory was also erected, as well as the buildings of the Departments of Chemistry, Mechanical Engineering and Electrical Engineering. World War II brought significant destruction, when 60 percent of the building burned down and 70 percent of the roofing material.
The Main Building
The Main Building of the Gdansk Technical University was and still is the largest of the erected buildings. Its cubic capacity is 122.000 cubic meters without basements and attics, it has about 210 rooms. On four floors, there are 17 lecture halls (for 27 to 140 people), 24 drawing rooms (12 to 45 tables), 36 offices for professors and professors’ assistants, 11 rooms for assistants, 11 rooms for collections and teaching aids. In the central part of the building there was a library, two high halls, the Senate hall, the chancellor’s office and the assembly hall.
The extremely rich, Art Nouveau decor was emphasized by ornaments and gilding. The windows of the representative rooms were decorated at the bottom with coloured stained glass. The most impressive was the Senate session hall, decorated with oak inlaid in the Old Gdansk style, and the assembly hall, which was surrounded by inlaid panels. Unfortunately, the entire rich interior design (with dominant colours of brown, green and gold) was destroyed during the building’s fire in 1945.
After 67 years, exactly on May 13, 2012, the clock tower in the Main Building was rebuilt. The 18-meter structure weighing 15 tons was decorated with a golden sculpture of the Allegory of Science – a female figure holding a book in one hand and a lamp in the other. The figure of the Allegory, 2.65 m high, was covered with 1250 gold flakes (64 square cm each). The appearance of the tower was recreated by Dr. Eng. Wieslaw Czabanski.
In the Main Building of the Gdansk Technical University there are courtyards named after two scientists associated with Gdansk: Jan Heweliusz and Gabriel Fahrenheit. In the courtyard named after Jan Hevelius there is Foucault’s Pendulum. The Main Building, located in the heart of the university campus, is entered in the register of monuments. In 2005, the Gdansk Technical University won the title of “Neat Monument” in the competition of the General Conservator of Monuments.