Viche Maidan (Ivano-Frankivsk)
The square stretches from Halych Street to Vitovsky Street. Through Vitovsky street a city wanderer may travel from the Viche Maidan to another city square the Mickiewicz Square. To the Maidan connect couple of small streets such as Bachynsky Street and Belveder as well as the stometrivka that is the extension of Nezalezhnist street. It is surrounded by numerous buildings such as the main post office, the Ukrtelecom building, the shopping mall "Malva", the business center "Kyiv", and many others. The square has couple of fountains, flowerbeds, and a small park.
The square started out from a city park that was created on an initiative of the local district starosta Francisco Kratter in 1825. He on behalf of the city bought the adjacent land owned by the Agopsowicz brothers in the vicinity of today's Sichovi Striltsi and Mazepa streets which were called respectively Sobieska and Kazimirowska. The land was implanted with numerous trees, flowerbeds, and park benches. In 1827 in its place a city park was opened, locally proclaimed as Kratterowka. The residents gathered there for rest and recreations. It was the first public city park. However, by the end of the century Kratterivka lost its charm as the new park "Dąbrowa" opened not far from it (today - Shevchenko park).
Later in the second half of 19th century Kratterowka was recognized as the city's square. The northern portion of it was named after Franz Joseph I, while its southern portion carried the name of Princess Gisela. After the 1920s during the Polish administration the both squares changed their names to Józef Piłsudski and General Haller, respectively. During the Soviet times the two squares were eventually united and called the Radyanska (Soviet) Square.
In 1904 right next to the park was built the Gartenberg's Passage which miraculously was preserved to our days. In 1960 the passage was rebuilt into a general department store and later became a department store for children. In 1990 the building was renovated into an exhibition hall, after which it turned into the shopping mall "Malva".
The Viche Maidan is favorite spot for political protests, music concerts, big holidays celebrations such as New Year and Christmas. At the New Year traditionally a big, oversize pine (New Year tree) gets placed in the middle of the square. During Christmas the maidan gets filled with people participating in a vertep parade. The name of the square derives from the Old-Slavic word viche, meaning a public gathering. It was given after the fall of the Soviet regime.
Statues and fountains
- Protsak, R. "By streets and squares of the city". "SIMYK". Ivano-Frankivsk, 2008. (page 13)
- (Ukrainian) Virtual Ivano-Frankivsk "Stanislav", travel the city while surfing the internet
- (Ukrainian) List of streets and squares of Ivano-Frankivsk