The architecture of Bulgaria after World War II
February 3, 2024
bgsocarch The architecture of Bulgaria in the second half of the 20th century
February 3, 2024
Research Project

Sofia’s New Architectural Heritage






Aneta Vasileva,
Emilia Kaleva,
Viktoriya Dimitrova,
Iva Hasamska

This is the first systemic analysis that outlines significant pieces of Bulgarian architecture built in Sofia following World War II with the aim to create a hierarchical shortlist of buildings and sites proposed for listing in the National Public Register of Cultural Heritage.

Bulgarian architeture from this period is not yet clearly recognised as heritage. There are only a few entries listed as heritage in the National Register of Cultural Heritage dating after 1945. Only a single entry – the Kambanite Park is located within the territory of Sofia Municipality. This leaves significant buildings or sites from our recent past at risk of demolition or detrimental alterations.

This research encompassed 120 buildings or sites within the territory of Sofia Municipality that posses distinct heritage features, which are not listed and at the same time face the biggest risk of losing their significance. They are analysed and ranked in two lists – a longlist (of 120 sites) and a shortlist (15 buildings and 7 group sites). The research proposal includes an evidenced case for the listing of the buildings and sites part of the shortlist, which include:

  1. Boyana State Residence Complex with the surrounding park (group site)
  2. Vitosha Hotel – New Otani / ‘Kempinski / ‘Marinela’ (building)
  3. Sofia Theatre (building)
  4. Bankya State Residence (former government balneotherapy sanatorium) (building)
  5. National Palace of Culture (group site)
  6. Zone B5 housing estate (group site) 
  7. Sofia Tennis Hall (building)
  8. Festival Sports Hall (building)
  9. Yavorov housing estate (former Lenin housing estate) (group site)
  10. Vladimir Zaimov housing estate (group site)
  11. The Largo (group site) 
  12. Universiada Sports Hall (building)
  13. Motopista housing estate (group site)
  14. House of Soviet Science and Culture (building)
  15. Reception Building and Museum of the Boyana Church (now adapted to accommodate 112th Kindergarten Detski Svyat) (building)
  16. Interpred World Trade Centre (building)
  17. 122nd Nikolay Liliev School (former 122nd Hristo Karpachev School) (building)
  18. Ministry of Foreign Affairs (building)
  19. Housing Block on Korab Planina Street and Babuna Planina Street (building)
  20. 192nd Kindergarten Lozichka in Lozenets (building)
  21. Cooperative Apartment Buildings on 37 Solunska Street and 41 Solunska Street (building)
  22. Rodina Hotel (building)

This research project is a paramount step in establishing the prime examples of Bulgarian architecture from the middle of the 20th century until today in Sofia and their eventual conservation.

Explore more about this project on Sofiaplan’s website.

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