Lodz Power Plant (EC1)

Lodz, Poland | C.1906

Photo Credit: Mariusz Majewski

EC1, also known as the Lodz Power Plant, was the first commercial power plant in Lodz, Poland. Built in 1906 and designed in the Art Nouveau style, the power plant supplied the city with electricity, steam, and heat over the course of its 94-year operation.

Despite several workers strikes during its construction, Lodz Power Plant was completed in just two years and continued to expand until World War I brought its growth to a halt. Following the War, the power plant became partly city-owned and entered a new phase of development.

By 1928, a machine factory and foundry were constructed near the plant site and the Brown Boveri turbine set was launched for the first time. During World War II, a fire broke out, destroying the roof of Machine Hall and damaging one of the turbine sets.

After World War II, the city proposed a heating network powered by four combined heat and power plants, including Lodz. Soon the plant started producing steam to help support the city’s industry. Within the decade, EC1 and the newly built Heat and Power Plant No. 2 merged into one enterprise called the Heat and Power Plant Complex, designating the name EC1 to the original power plant.

EC1 officially ended its service in 2000. Years later, Lodz City Council established the cultural institution EC1 Lodz – Miasto Kultury which worked to revitalize the site of the former power plant. The post-industrial buildings were renovated, modernized, and restored. Today, the EC1 site is an exhibition space which includes a concert venue and planetarium.

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