SMALL HYDRO POWER STATION                                                                                                                 

author unknown, 1909

National historic landmark


It might seem irrelevant to include the secession building of a small hydro power station in this catalogue of functionalist architecture in Trenčianske Teplice. Admittedly, neither the form nor the rendering of the building belong to the category of modernist architecture. However, its function makes it a part of local architecture development. At the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries, Teplice was a popular destination to the Hungarian middle-class from big cities. Regardless of the size of the spa town, services at city-level standards have always been required by spa guests. It was therefore necessary to build a street light system. The small hydro power station in the spa park served to produce energy for the town lighting. The raceway, leading from the Baračka stream, supposedly got clogged soon and the power station stopped working. Subsequently, its construction served mainly as a cultural facility – a park pavilion. The architecture of the power station is no less interesting. Although it is a secession building, its ornamentality is minimal. Moreover, the windows illuminating the turbine hall are glazed by an outstandingly shaped geometric glass, which resembles cubist architecture. The frontage is ruled by four columns, which line the edges of a trapezial avant-corps. The columns are crowned by pseudoegyptian lotus heads and small embedded sea shells, which also decorate the horizontal cornice frieze. The water elements were not used accidentally, as they directly correspond with the building´s function. In addition, a built-in fountain – a symbolic mouth of the viaduct – was part of the frontage. The building is currently abandoned. After 100 years of existence it does not even serve its alternative cultural purpose. Yet, together with the evangelical church and sanatorium Machnáč, the hydro power station remains a valuable part of the architectural composition of the park.