Koliivshchyny Square is located in the former Jewish quarter of the historic centre of Lviv (Ukraine), a district characterised by a dense urban fabric with narrow streets. The square was created by the demolition of an old stone house, freeing up around 600 m2. The façades facing the square were later rebuilt in different styles, giving the place a varied, enclosed, intimate and welcoming character, which contrasts with the busy fabric of the city’s historic centre. The proposal was implemented as part of the Re_HERIT project: co-responsibility for shared heritage.
Aim of the intervention
The main objective of the project was to restore the square’s lost identity and to highlight the presence of multiple histories in the place, through various archaeological interventions that have uncovered the hidden vestiges in the space. The intervention highlights those histories and that past, while recovering the collective life of the square.
Before the square existed, the site was occupied by old buildings that were torn down in the 19th century, due to their poor condition. The location of the walls of those buildings has been established from numerous maps and has been confirmed by archaeological excavations; they are now marked on the pavement with a different type of brick.
On one side of the square there was a medieval wall, which was also found during the archaeological excavation. It can now be seen on the pavement of the square, marked with the same material that was used to build it. The excavations also uncovered an old well, the exact location of which had been unknown, with a foundation that was very well preserved. Now the new square marks the place where the restored well stood.
Since the square is located in the historic centre, the need for environmental comfort is a very important factor. Two rows of trees (Crataegus monogyna ‘Stricta’) have been planted along the building façades, highlighting the small scale of the square and more clearly delineating its boundaries.
A series of chairs provide different opportunities to sit and chat, further underlining the intimacy of the space. The names of Jewish residents and employees of the neighbourhood who were forced to leave their homes during World War II have been inscribed around the stone well, thus recovering a part of the city’s historical memory.
Koliivshchyny Square was a place for gathering and communication for local residents before World War II. It is now part of the historic centre, which has been brought back to life after years of neglect, regaining its historical significance and an inviting atmosphere.
[Last update: 15/11/2022]