U?miechnij si?, jeste? w Gdyni
(Smile, you're in Gdynia)
|City rights||10th February 1926|
|o Mayor||Wojciech Szczurek|
|o City||135 km2 (52 sq mi)|
|Highest elevation||205 m (673 ft)|
|Lowest elevation||0 m (0 ft)|
(31 December 2019)
|o City||246,348 (12th)|
|o Density||1,820/km2 (4,700/sq mi)|
|Time zone||UTC+1 (CET)|
|o Summer (DST)||UTC+2 (CEST)|
81-004 to 81-919
|Area code(s)||+48 58|
Gdynia ( g?-DIN-ee-?, Polish: ['?da] ; German: Gdingen; Kashubian: Gdiniô, 1939-1945 Gotenhafen) is a city in northern Poland. Located on Gda?sk Bay on the southern coast of the Baltic Sea, it is a major seaport and the second-largest city in Pomeranian Voivodeship after Gda?sk. Gdynia has a population of 246,348, which makes it the twelfth-largest city in Poland. It is part of a conurbation with the spa town of Sopot, the city of Gda?sk, and suburban communities, which together form a metropolitan area called the Tricity (Trójmiasto), with a population of over 1,000,000 people.
Historically and culturally part of Kashubia in Eastern Pomerania, Gdynia for centuries remained a small farming and fishing village. At the beginning of the 20th-century, Gdynia attracted visitors as a seaside resort town, and began to build tourism. The local population increased in response to the change in the economy.
After Poland regained its independence in 1918, the government decided to construct a Polish seaport in Gdynia, between the Free City of Danzig (a semi-autonomous city-state) and German Pomerania, making Gdynia a primary economic hub. In 1926 Gdynia was granted city rights, after which it enjoyed a rapid demographic and architectural development.
This was interrupted by the outbreak of World War II, during which the newly built port and shipyard were completely destroyed. The population of the city suffered heavy losses, as most of the inhabitants were evicted and expelled by the German occupiers. The locals were either displaced to other regions of occupied Poland or sent to German Nazi concentration camps throughout Europe.
After the war, Gdynia was settled with the former inhabitants of Warsaw, which also suffered major destruction, and lost cities, such as Lviv and Vilnius in the Eastern Borderlands. The city was gradually regenerating, with its shipyard being rebuilt and expanded. In December 1970 the shipyard workers' protest against an increase in government-established prices was violently repressed by government forces. This greatly contributed to the rise of the Solidarity movement in nearby Gda?sk.
Today the port of Gdynia is a regular stopover on the cruising itinerary of large, luxury passenger ships. A new ferry terminal with a civil airport are under development. The city has won numerous awards for its safety, infrastructure, quality of life, and a rich variety of tourist attractions. In 2013 Gdynia was ranked by readers of The News as Poland's best city to live in, and topped the national rankings in the category of "general quality of life".
The area of the later city of Gdynia shared its history with Pomerelia (Eastern Pomerania). In prehistoric times, it was the center of Oksywie culture; it was later populated by Slavs with some Baltic Prussian influences.
The decision to build a major seaport at Gdynia village was made by the Polish government in winter 1920, in the midst of the Polish-Soviet War (1919-1920). The authorities and seaport workers of the Free City of Danzig felt Poland's economic rights in the city were being misappropriated to help fight the war. German dockworkers went on strike, refusing to unload shipments of military supplies sent from the West to aid the Polish army, and Poland realized the need for a port city it was in complete control of, economically and politically.
Construction of Gdynia seaport started in 1921 but, because of financial difficulties, it was conducted slowly and with interruptions. It was accelerated after the Sejm (Polish parliament) passed the Gdynia Seaport Construction Act on 23 September 1922. By 1923 a 550-metre pier, 175 metres (574 feet) of a wooden tide breaker, and a small harbour had been constructed. Ceremonial inauguration of Gdynia as a temporary military port and fishers' shelter took place on 23 April 1923. The first major seagoing ship arrived on 13 August 1923.
To speed up the construction works, the Polish government in November 1924 signed a contract with the French-Polish Consortium for Gdynia Seaport Construction. By the end of 1925, they had built a small seven-metre-deep harbour, the south pier, part of the north pier, a railway, and had ordered the trans-shipment equipment. The works were going more slowly than expected, however. They accelerated only after May 1926, because of an increase in Polish exports by sea, economic prosperity, the outbreak of the German-Polish trade war which reverted most Polish international trade to sea routes, and thanks to the personal engagement of Eugeniusz Kwiatkowski, Polish Minister of Industry and Trade (also responsible for the construction of Centralny Okr?g Przemys?owy). By the end of 1930 docks, piers, breakwaters, and many auxiliary and industrial installations were constructed (such as depots, trans-shipment equipment, and a rice processing factory) or started (such as a large cold store).
Trans-shipments rose from 10,000 tons (1924) to 2,923,000 tons (1929). At this time Gdynia was the only transit and special seaport designed for coal exports.
In the years 1931-1939 Gdynia harbour was further extended to become a universal seaport. In 1938 Gdynia was the largest and most modern seaport on the Baltic Sea, as well as the tenth biggest in Europe. The trans-shipments rose to 8.7 million tons, which was 46% of Polish foreign trade. In 1938 the Gdynia shipyard started to build its first full-sea ship, the Olza.
The city was constructed later than the seaport. In 1925 a special committee was inaugurated to build the city; city expansion plans were designed and city rights were granted in 1926, and tax privileges were granted for investors in 1927. The city started to grow significantly after 1928.
A new railway station and the Post Office were completed. The State railways extended their lines, built bridges and also constructed a group of houses for their employees. Within a few years houses were built along some 10 miles (16 km) of road leading northward from the Free City of Danzig to Gdynia and beyond. Public institutions and private employers helped their staffs to build houses.
In 1933 a plan of development providing for a population of 250,000 was worked out by a special commission appointed by a government committee, in collaboration with the municipal authorities. By 1939 the population had grown to over 120,000.
The city and seaport were occupied in September 1939 by German troops and renamed Gotenhafen after the Goths, an ancient Germanic tribe, who had lived in the area. Some 50,000 Polish citizens, who after 1920 had been brought into the area by the Polish government after the decision to enlarge the harbour was made, were expelled to the General Government. Kashubians who were suspected to support the Polish cause, particularly those with higher education, were arrested and executed. The main place of execution was Pia?nica (Groß Plaßnitz), where about 12,000 were executed. The German gauleiter Albert Forster considered Kashubians of "low value" and did not support any attempts to create a Kashubian nationality. Some Kashubians organized anti-Nazi resistance groups, "Gryf Kaszubski" (later "Gryf Pomorski"), and the exiled "Zwiazek Pomorski" in Great Britain.
The harbour was transformed into a German naval base. The shipyard was expanded in 1940 and became a branch of the Kiel shipyard (Deutsche Werke Kiel A.G.). Gotenhafen became an important base, due to its being relatively distant from the war theater, and many German large ships--battleships and heavy cruisers--were anchored there. During 1942, Dr Joseph Goebbels authorized relocation of Cap Arcona to Gotenhafen Harbour as a stand-in for RMS Titanic during filming of the German-produced movie Titanic, directed by Herbert Selpin.
The seaport and the shipyard both witnessed several air raids by the Allies from 1943 onwards, but suffered little damage. Gotenhafen was used during winter 1944-45 to evacuate German troops and refugees trapped by the Red Army. Some of the ships were hit by torpedoes from Soviet submarines in the Baltic Sea on the route west. The ship Wilhelm Gustloff sank, taking about 9,400 people with her - the worst loss of life in a single sinking in maritime history. The seaport area was largely destroyed by withdrawing German troops and millions of encircled refugees in 1945 being bombarded by the Soviet military (90% of the buildings and equipment were destroyed) and the harbour entrance was blocked by the German battleship Gneisenau that had been brought to Gotenhafen for major repairs.
In the Polish 1970 protests, worker demonstrations took place at Gdynia Shipyard. Workers were fired upon by the police. The fallen (e.g. Brunon Drywa) became symbolized by a fictitious worker Janek Wi?niewski, commemorated in a song by Mieczys?aw Cholewa, Pie o Janku z Gdyni. One of Gdynia's important streets is named after Janek Wi?niewski. The same person was portrayed by Andrzej Wajda in his movie Man of Iron as Mateusz Birkut.
On December 4, 1999, a storm destroyed a huge crane in a shipyard, which was able to lift 900 tons.
|2000||255,420||135.49 square kilometres (52.31 sq mi) (after GUS - Central Statistical Office in Warsaw)|
The climate of Gdynia is an oceanic climate owing to its position of the Baltic Sea, which moderates the temperatures, compared to the interior of Poland. The climate is cool throughout the year and there is a somewhat uniform precipitation throughout the year. Typical of Northern Europe, there is little sunshine during the year.
|Climate data for Gdynia (1976-2010)|
|Record high °C (°F)||13.7
|Average high °C (°F)||2.0
|Daily mean °C (°F)||-0.6
|Average low °C (°F)||-3.2
|Record low °C (°F)||-21.2
|Average precipitation mm (inches)||46.6
|Average rainy days||15||11||13||13||16||15||16||17||14||18||19||16||183|
|Average snowy days||11||13||10||2||0||0||0||0||0||1||6||7||50|
|Average relative humidity (%)||82||86||79||69||63||69||71||72||82||83||84||87||77|
|Source: my weather2|
Gdynia is divided into smaller divisions: dzielnicas and osiedles. Gdynia's dzielnicas include: Babie Do?y, Chwarzno-Wiczlino, Chylonia, Cisowa, D?browa, Dzia?ki Le?ne, Grabówek, Kamienna Góra, Karwiny, Leszczynki, Ma?y Kack, Ob?u?e, Oksywie, Or?owo, Pogórze, Pustki Cisowskie-Demptowo, Red?owo, ?ródmie?cie, Wielki Kack, Witomino-Le?niczówka, Witomino-Radiostacja, Wzgórze ?w. Maksymiliana .
Osiedles: Bernadowo, Brzozowa Góra, Chwarzno, D?brówka, Demptowo, D?bowa Góra, Fikakowo, Gobiewo, Kacze Buki, Kolibki, Kolonia Chwaszczyno, Kolonia Rybacka, Krykulec, Marszewo, Mi?dzytorze, Niemotowo, Osada Kolejowa, Osada Rybacka, Osiedle Bernadowo, Port, Pustki Cisowskie, Tasza, Wiczlino, Wielka Rola, Witomino, Wysoka, Zielenisz.
Gdynia is a relatively modern city.[failed verification] Its architecture includes the 13th century St. Michael the Archangel's Church in Oksywie, the oldest building in Gdynia, and the 17th century neo-Gothic manor house located on Folwarczna Street in Or?owo. The city also holds many examples of early 20th-century architecture, especially monumentalism and early functionalism, and modernism. A good example of modernism is PLO building situated at 10 Lutego Street.
The surrounding hills and the coastline attract many nature lovers. A leisure pier and a cliff-like coastline in K?pa Red?owska, as well as the surrounding Nature Reserve, are also popular locations. In the harbour, there are two anchored museum ships, the destroyer ORP B?yskawica and the tall ship frigate Dar Pomorza. A 1.5-kilometre (0.93 mi)-long promenade leads from the marina in the city center, to the beach in Red?owo.
In 2015 the Emigration Museum opened in the city.
Gdynia hosts the Gdynia Film Festival, the main Polish film festival. The International Random Film Festival was hosted in Gdynia in November 2014.
Since 2003 Gdynia has been hosting the Open'er Festival, one of the biggest contemporary music festivals in Europe. The festival welcomes many foreign hip-hop, rock and electronic music artists every year. The lineup for 2015 was Mumford and Sons, Of Monsters and Men, The Prodigy, The Vaccines and many more.
Another important summer event in Gdynia is the Viva Beach Party, which is a large two-day techno party made on Gdynia's Public Beach and a summer-welcoming concerts CudaWianki. Gdynia also hosts events for the annual Gda?sk Shakespeare Festival.
In the summer of 2014 Gdynia hosted Red Bull Air Race World Championship.
In 2008, Gdynia made it onto the Monopoly Here and Now World Edition board after being voted by fans through the Internet. Gdynia occupies the space traditionally held by Mediterranean Avenue, being the lowest voted city to make it onto the Monopoly Here and Now board, but also the smallest city to make it in the game. All of the other cities are large and widely known ones, the second smallest being Riga. The unexpected success of Gdynia can be attributed to a mobilization of the town's population to vote for it on the Internet.
An abandoned factory district in Gdynia was the scene for the survival series Man vs Wild, season 6, episode 12. The host, Bear Grylls, manages to escape the district after blowing up a door and crawling through miles of sewer.
This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it. (April 2010)
Notable companies that have their headquarters or regional offices in Gdynia:
The conurbation's main airport, Gda?sk Lech Wasa Airport, lays approximately 25 kilometres (16 mi) south-west of central Gdynia, and has connections to approximately 55 destinations. It is the third largest airport in Poland. A second General Aviation terminal was scheduled to be opened by May 2012, which will increase the airport's capacity to 5mln passengers per year.
Another local airport, (Gdynia-Kosakowo Airport) is situated partly in the village of Kosakowo, just to the north of the city, and partly in Gdynia. This has been a military airport since the World War II, but it has been decided in 2006 that the airport will be used to serve civilians. Work was well in progress and was due to be ready for 2012 when the project collapsed following a February 2014 EU decision regarding Gdynia city funding as constituting unfair competition to Gda?sk airport. In March 2014, the airport management company filed for bankruptcy, this being formally announced in May that year. The fate of some PLN 100 million of public funds from Gdynia remain unaccounted for with documents not being released, despite repeated requests for such from residents to the city president, Wojciech Szczurek.
The principal station in Gdynia is Gdynia G?ówna railway station, and Gdynia has five other railway stations. Local services are provided by the 'Fast Urban Railway,' Szybka Kolej Miejska (Tricity) operating frequent trains covering the Tricity area including Gda?sk, Sopot and Gdynia. Long distance trains from Warsaw via Gda?sk terminate at Gdynia, and there are direct trains to Szczecin, Pozna?, Katowice, Lublin and other major cities. In 2011-2015 the Warsaw-Gda?sk-Gdynia route is undergoing a major upgrading costing $3 billion, partly funded by the European Investment Bank, including track replacement, realignment of curves and relocation of sections of track to allow speeds up to 200 km/h (124 mph), modernization of stations, and installation of the most modern ETCS signalling system, which is to be completed in June 2015. In December 2014 new Alstom Pendolino high-speed trains were put into service between Gdynia, Warsaw and Kraków reducing rail travel times to Gdynia by 2 hours.