The Department of Architectural Environment Design conducted a series of student workshops on «Magic Salt Cities» with colleagues from the TU Kaiserslautern, Germany. These workshops were supported by the international organization MeetUp! German-Ukrainian Youth Encounters and Professor Bohdan Cherkes, Director of the Institute of Architecture and Design.
– German architects presented to us their experience in the regeneration of old salt towns and enterprises. At the first meeting our students told about the Drohobych salt plant, which has existed there since 1250. The workshop was aimed at developing projects for the modernization of this plant and we worked with students on this for a month, holding online meetings with German colleagues, said the Head of the Department of AED, Professor Viktor Proskuriakov.
During the first expedition, they inspected the old salt mining enterprises in the former Drohobych region. They visited Mykolayiv, Stebnyk, Drohobych, Boryslav, Stara Sil, as well as Truskavets, where Barbara salt is still mined.
– Within the framework of the workshop, four concepts of salt plant development were developed. As the territory is huge, we have developed ideas for additional use and development of cultural and entertainment activities. In each of the four projects we tried to show the industry as an attractive component, as there is an outdated mining technique and the equipment is very old. Also there is a well in Drohobych, where a saline solution is extracted from a depth of 50 meters. After evaporation, mineralized and much softer salt than the one we buy in stores is obtained.
It is the same kind that is served in the most expensive restaurants in the world. It is not produced much and there are no funds for presentable packaging. In the Soviet times, attempts were made to increase capacity and pump out more salt, but it almost led to a catastrophe – voids appeared in the ground, threatening to collapse. Thus, developing our projects and using the experience of German colleagues, we focused more on the attractive component for tourists, said Viktor Proskuriakov.