The Radio Station in Baranovichy
The building of INTEX TV studio that is at 65, Komsomolsksaya Str., is unique in several respects. In the first place, it is one of the 3 houses that have remained intact in Baranovichi built in functional style which was popular in the 1920s-1930s. Secondly, immediately after it had been commissioned, this building housed one of the most up-to-date radio stations of the so-called Second Rzeczpospolita (Republic of Poland).
The total area of the plot of land, where the radio station stands with two separately mounted radio masts of 141 and 145 meters high, was 10,000 square meters, while the floor space of the building was 2,800 square meters. The construction lasted from 1937 until 1939. The building was designed by Tadeusz Lobas, an architect from Warsaw. The building was designed and built in functional style which was then fashionable in Europe and, particularly, in Poland.
Functionalism is a type of style in architecture, painting, design, etc. ,which interpreted and absorbed futurism and constructivism arising at the turn of the century.
It borrowed from the former irreconcilable negation of the past architectural norms and canons, and from the latter – the dominance of generalized abstract forms. The term “functionalism” itself conspicuously implies that the main idea of this style is functionalism, that is the building should correspond to its direct functions as much as possible.
TThe technical systems of the radio station, which first started its operation on October 30th, 1938, were supermodern. The radio transmitter capacity was 50 kV, the same as those in Lviv and Vilno. To run it, they had to improve the power station in Baranovichi, as the transmitter consumed twice as much electricity as the whole town. Its broadcasting on the wave 577 m embraced the area within a radius of 120 km and completely covered Novogrudok Province and the northern part of Polessie Province.
Setting up a radio station in Baranovichi pursued a dual goal. First, it was undoubtedly of great military and strategic significance, and political, of course. Naturally, radio as the most advanced mass medium of that time, also performed an informative and entertaining function, though to a much lesser extent.
It is encouraging to note that the building of the radio station in Baranovichi has remained perfectly intact to this day and today it remains a valuable historical-cultural monument protected by the state.