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Gdynia (Polish: Gdynia; German: Gdingen, Gotenhafen (Kashubian: Gdiniô;) is a city and an important seaport on the south coast of the Baltic Sea (Gdansk Bay in metropolitan area called Tricity (Gdansk, Gdynia and Sopot) with some 250,000 inhabitants. Gdynia is located in Kashubia or Eastern Pomerania region, north-western Poland and is also a county-status city in Pomeranian Voivodship since 1999, previously a city in Gdansk Voivodship (1945-1998).

Table of contents
1 Port of Gdynia
2 Economy
3 Education
4 History of Gdynia
5 Modern division into neighbourhoods
6 Population and area
7 Further reading
8 External links

Port of Gdynia

See also Seaports of the Baltic sea


The companies, that have their headquarter in Gdynia:


7 universities:

See also
Education in Gdynia

Many Gdynians also studied on other Tricity universities.

History of Gdynia

Gdynia has a history of thousands of years. Initially it was a Pomeranian (Kashubian) fishers village first mentioned in 1253. Oksywie now part of Gdynia was mentioned even earlier in 1209. In years 1382-1772 Gdynia belonged to the Cistersian abbey in Oliwa.

Gdynia with Eastern Pomerania belonged to Poland (ca.990-1308), state of the Teutonic Order (1308-1454/66), Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth (1466-1772), Kingdom of Prussia (1772-1919), with Prussia to the German Empire (1870-1919), to Poland (1919-1945), to Germany (1939-1945) and Poland (1945-present).

In 1870 Gdynia had some 1200 inhabitants, and it was not a poor fishers village as sometimes described in the literature. It was a popular tourist spot with several guesthouses, restaurants, cafes, a couple of brick houses and small harbour with pier for small trading ships. The first Kashubian mayor of Gdynia was Jan Radtke.

After the 1919 Treaty of Versailles, the town with other parts of former Polish Pomerania (or Royal Prussia), were returned to Poland, while its major city and seaport Gdansk and surrounding area were declared Free State Gdansk under the League of Nations and under Poland's control.

Construction of the Seaport

The decision to build a major seaport at the Gdynia village was made by the Polish government in winter 1920, because of the hostile attitude of the Gdansk authorities and the seaport workers towards Allied military supplies to Poland during the Polish-Soviet War (1919-1920). Construction of the seaport was started in 1921, but because of financial difficulties was conducted slowly and with interruptions. It was accelerated after The Sejm (Polish parliament) had passed Gdynia Seaport Construction Act on 23 September 1922. Upto 1923 550 metres pier, 175 metres of a wooden tide breaker, and a small harbour were costructed. Ceremonial inauguration of Gdynia as a temporary military port and fishers shelter took place on 23 April 1923, and the first major sea-going ship arrived on 13 August 1923.

To speed up the construction works Polish government signed in November 1924 a contract with the French-Polish Consortium for Gdynia Seaport Construction, which till end of 1925 has built a small 7 metres-deep harbour, the south pier, partly the north pier, a railroad, and has also ordered the trans-shipment equipment. The works were going on slower than expected though. They were accelarated only after May 1926, because of the increase of the sea trade exports of Poland, economic prosperity, outbreak of the German-Polish trade war which has reverted most of Polish international trade to the sea routes, and also thanks to the personal engagement of Eugeniusz Kwiatkowski, Polish Minister of Industry and Trade. Till the end of 1930 docks, piers, breakwaters and many auxiliary and industrial installations were constructed, (e.g depots, trans-shipment equipment, rice processing factory) or started (e.g. big clod room).

Trans-shipments rose to 10,000 tons (1924) and 2,923,000 tons (1929). At this time Gdynia was only the transit and special seaport designed to the coal exports. In the years 1931-1939 Gdynia harbour was further extended to become a universal seaport. In 1938 Gdynia was the most modern and the biggest seaport on the Baltic sea, and the 10th biggest in Europe. The trasnshipments rose to 8.7 mln tons, which was 46% of Polish foreign trade. In 1938 Gdynia shipyard started to build its first full-sea ship called Olza.

Construction of the City

The city was constructed later that the seaport. In 1925 a special committee was inaugurated to build the city, in 1926 city expansion plans were designed, and city rights were granted, in 1927 tax priviledges for investors granted. The city started to grow significantly after 1928, population grew to 120.000 in 1939

Gdynia during World War II (1939-1945)

Gdynia city and seaport were occupied in September 1939 and renamed Gotenhafen to commemorate the Goths (despite that the previous German name was Gdingen). The Germans has expulsed some 50,000 Poles, and the harbour was turned into German navy seabase. The shipyard was extended in 1940 and turned into a brnach of a Kiel shipyard (Deutsche Werke Kiel AG.). Gdynia witnessed several airraids by the Allies from 1943, but little destruction was made then. Gdynia seport was vandalised by the withdrwawing German troops in 1945 (upto 90% of the buildings and equipment) and the harbour entrance was blocked by the Gneisenau battleship.

In March 1945 Gdynia was captured by the Soviets and returned to Poland (Gdansk Voivodship).

In 1970 the riots occurred, see also Coastal cities events.

Modern Gdynia

In Gdynia harbour there are anchored two museum ships: the destroyer ORP Blyskawica and the sailing frigate Dar Pomorza.

Modern division into neighbourhoods

Population and area

1870: 1200 inhabitants
1920: 1300 inhabitants
1926: 12,000 inhabitants, 6 km2
1939: 127,000 inhabitants, 66 km2

1950: ? inhabitants
1960: 150,200 inhabitants, 73 km2
1970: 191,500 inhabitants, 75 km2
1975: 221,100 inhabitants, 134 km2
1980: 236,400 inhabitants, 134 km2
1990: 251,500 inhabitants, 136 km2
1994: 252,000 inhabitants, 136 km2
1995: 251,400 inhabitants, 136 km2
2000: ? inhabitants

Further reading

External links

Internet directories