Trade Unions Building (Kiev)
|Union House of Ukrainian Trade Unions Federation|
|Будинок спілок Федерації професійних спілок України|
Trade Union Building, July 2013.
|Address||16 Khreshchatyk Street|
|Town or city||Kiev|
|Current tenants||Federation of Trade Unions of Ukraine|
|Inaugurated||27 June 1980|
|Client||Federation of Trade Unions of Ukraine|
|Design and construction|
|Architect||Oleksandr Malynovsky and Oleksandr Komarovsky|
The Trade Unions Building, or Budynok Profspilok (officially in Ukrainian: Будинок спілок Федерації професійних спілок України, Union house of the Federation of Trade Unions of Ukraine), is a large office building in Kiev, Ukraine. Located on the city's main Khreshchatyk Street, its façade faces the central Maidan Nezalezhnosti square and contains the city's main clock tower.
The building was built in place of the Noble Assembly building that stood in its place during 1851–1976 and even survived World War II.
Maidan Nezalezhnosti's northern half is a unique layout that's topped with a semi-circle with six radial roads. After the destruction of several Khrestchatyk buildings (such as Kiev City Duma building, Ginzburg building and others) by the Soviet diversion groups during World War II on 24 September 1941, the square was completely rebuilt in the mid 1950s in a project presided over by architect Alexander Dobrovolsky, in a style to resemble the dominant revival architecture trend, known as Stalinist baroque. In 1956 Moscow issued a decree that challenged the use of excessive decorations in architecture, which stopped existing work before the project could be finished leaving the square with obvious asymmetry, with only the western part completed.
After nearly two decades of such visual dissemblance, in 1974 the XXVth Kiev's city conference gave a go-ahead to re-develop the city centre and finish the ensemble. The Ukrainian Republican Soviet of Trade Unions (predecessor to the current Federation of Trade Unions of Ukraine) was awarded this prize spot in a draw, and was to sponsor the construction that was carried out by the Kyivmiskbud-4 trust. The building's project, work of Kievan-native architects Oleksandr Malynovsky and Oleksandr Komarovsky, was a very fine crafted design. This was because it had to match the imposing Kiev Post Office building opposite not only in proportions, but in such a style that would blend in with the milieu, yet be visibly a modern structure. One feature that punctuated the latter, was a 24-metre tower with four 7.2 x 4.3 metre screens displaying the current time, temperature, date and other information. This became the official clock tower of Ukraine, and chimed the famous melody Yak tebe ne lyubyty, Kyyeve miy. In 2011 the tower was renovated and the screens, being a matrix of almost five thousand 127-Volt, 40 W light bulbs were replaced by diode matrices, providing multi-colour digital image with much greater resolution.
Most of the building was used as offices by the Trade Unions federation, however it contains several auditoriums and banquet rooms that allowed it to be used as a permanent multi-purpose venue.
During the ongoing Euromaidan protest campaigns, the Budynok Profspilok was occupied by protesters and turned into their main center housing political headquarters, the press center, security center and the main kitchen. A number of important Euromaidan events, including recurrent attacks and provocations by police, occurred in and around the building.
In reality the building was completely burnt down at night on 18–19 February, while mass sniping fire took place on 20 February 2014.
Due to the severe damages the building suffered from the fire, it was covered with large canvas screens on two sides with the words "Glory to Ukraine" printed on them in large letters.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Trade Unions Building (Kiev).|
Trade Union Building surrounded by Euromaidan protesters, 1 December 2013.
Giant advertising screen on the façade of Trade Unions Building broadcasts Vitali Klitschko addressing the crowds at the Maidan Nezalezhnosti, 3 December 2013.
The building was set afire, reportedly by policemen,on 18 February 2014, during Euromaidan clashes.
The Trade Union Building in November 2014 covered with a large banner with the inscription "Glory to Ukraine" after it burned out during Euromaidan protests.
- In Kiev, remembered the destruction of Khreschatyk 70 years ago (+ German archival VIDEO). Ukrayinska Pravda. 26 September 2011.
- Maidan Nezalezhnosti on Travelguide-Ukraine.com
- In memory of the Trade Unions Building. PHOTO. Ukrayinska Pravda (Historic Pravda). 19 February 2014.