Modern and ancient, side by side
Iasi, one of the oldest cities in Romania, boasts a major architectural heritage from the totalitarian Communist regime, right next to Orthodox churches and synagogues.
For the Romanian Communist regime (1948-1989), architecture was an important tool of propaganda. Nicolae Ceauşescu (1965-1989) carried out a vast program of urban planning. ‘New cities for new men’ was the idea behind the demolition and subsequent reconstruction of many urban central areas. Huge housing blocks characterised the new townscapes, providing modern living standards for the masses.
Inspired by modern European architecture
Iasi’s historic city centre totally changed appearance. Some historical buildings were demolished and replaced with new buildings. The new constructions were inspired by contemporary trends of modern European architecture, such as rationalism and functionalism. Within an area of only 200 m2, there is a major concentration of a large number of examples of modern architecture: the Prefecture, various large blocks of flats, particularly those of the Union Square Ensemble, the Student’s Culture House and the Luceafarul Theatre.