Town planninig

Chelmno is one of the most beautiful cities in Pomerania with its centuries-long history, well preserved urban development system, city defensive walls and churches. It presents a vision of a big Medieval city which for centuries was a model for over 220 other cities of Poland. It had a very advantageous defensive location thanks to being situated on the edge of the Vistula valley. The old town enclosed within the almost untouched city walls is a great example of the Medieval urban system created on so called ‘raw root’, i.e. created in a new place according to a detailed design.
The street system was clear and simple and based on the shape of a chess board – the streets criss-cross at the right angle thus dividing the city into four quarters:
– the big quarter, limited by Grubinska St. and Tlusta St. (Grudziacka St. and Rycerska St.), inhabited by the wealthiest townsmen;
– the small quarter, the southern part with Torunska St., The Holy Spirit St. and Tkacka St. (22nd January St.), with the parish church of St. Mary’s Assumption, the church and the hospital of the Holy Spirit, and St. Martin’s Chapel;
– the Franciscan quarter located in the north-west part of the city with the Franciscan and Cistercian convent complex;
– the Dominican quarter located in the north-east part of the city, the most densely populated area.


The Chelmno rod (4.35m) dividing into 7.5 ells (58cm each) or 15 feet (29cm each)  and with 10 rods making 1 rope became the official measurement unit. The mapped out streets were 2.5 Chelmno rods wide, i.e. about 11 maters wide. The dimensions of the planned rectangular main square were 111 by 156 meters. The city hall is the main building of the Main Square. In the north-east part of the square, there were stalls, one storey buildings used for trade: the baker’s, the butcher’s, and the shoemaker’s. In the south-east part there was a guardroom which was pulled down in the 19th century, a water tank used for fire fighting, 3 wells-pumps and a water tower. Also, there were merchants’ houses called ‘pakusze’, for example: the English House, The Artus Court, and the Dutch and Danish houses.