Squat Milada

Squat Milada is a First Republic villa located in the Libeň district of Prague. Milada was intended to be demolished in the 1980s and thus deleted from the cadastre, becoming a house which officially did not exist. It became one of the Czech Republic's best known squats, occupied from 1997 until 2009. It was then reoccupied for a day in 2012.[1] Acting as a self-managed social centre and infoshop hosting concerts and events, Milada was also home to a number of people.[2] Despite various plans for the site, as of 2019, the building was standing derelict.

Squat Milada
Vila Milada (02).jpg
General information
LocationLibeň, Prague, Czechia
Coordinates50°07′01″N 14°26′35″E / 50.11694°N 14.44306°E / 50.11694; 14.44306Coordinates: 50°07′01″N 14°26′35″E / 50.11694°N 14.44306°E / 50.11694; 14.44306

HistoryEdit

Milada is a First Republic villa located in the Libeň district of Prague, next to two blocks of flats (Kolej 17. listopadu) housing university students.[3] As part of plans for its demolition, Milada had been removed from the cadastre.[4] Left derelict in 1988, Milada was occupied in 1997, along with the neighbouring villa, Miluška.[5]

Social centreEdit

 
Milada's neighbour Miluška after eviction in 2009

The self-managed social centre was used as an infoshop, a bicycle repair workshop, a cafe, a meeting space and a venue for punk gigs and experimental music.[6] A Food Not Bombs collective cooked out of the building, which also housed people.[7]

Milada was raided twice by the police in the summer of 1998 and was also attacked by representatives of the owner. In October 1998, a private security firm attempted to evict the building but was repelled, with two squatters remaining on the roof for four days. The security guards trashed the house but were unable to evict it.[4] Students from a nearby housing block strung a line of rope across so that they could supply the occupiers with food and drink.[8]

Originally occupied as a "Point of Free Culture and Resistance", the project quickly changed to a new community.[6] Over time, the number of events being organised declined and then in 2007, a new collective emerged.[7] Milada had become one of the longest-lasting and well-known squats in the Czech Republic, alongside Ladronka. In March 2009, the building was re-registered by the owner, the Institute for Information in Education (ÚIV), as a first step before selling it.[9] The eviction in 2009 became a controversial story in the mainstream media.[10] The house was then briefly reoccupied a week later amid fears that it would be demolished.[11]

Post-evictionEdit

Protests were held in other Czech cities and in Prague a former spa was occupied in Albertov. The occupation was evicted the next day, with over 70 arrests. The people who had gone inside the building were charged with trespassing and in 2011 the charges were dropped.[8] After the eviction, Michael Kocáb (Minister for Human Rights and Minorities) offered the squatters a place to stay at Truhlářská Street in the Old Town.[3] This became known as Truhla, hosting events until June 2010.[8]

A party at Milada to mark three years since the eviction was broken up by the police on June 30, 2012. A helicopter and 100 police arrested 25 people for various offences.[12] In 2015, there was a debate in the media as the Supreme Administrative Court considered an appeal regarding the legality of the eviction of Milada.[13]

Charles University had planned to set up a small campus at Milada, but failed to transfer the ownership of the building from the Institute for Information in Education in 2010. After the eviction, the university tried again, without success.[3] As of 2019, the building was still standing derelict; now owned by the Office of Government Representation in Property Affairs (ÚZSVM), there were no plans to restore the villa.[14] In 2021 the university was able to buy the Milada site for CZK 56,753,000. It made plans to redevelop it into a campus.[15]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Poslední pražský squat, vila Milada, má namále. Vyklízí ji bezpečnostní agentura". Hospodářské Noviny. Ihned. 2009. Archived from the original on 2020-07-29. Retrieved 2015-11-06.
  2. ^ Boháčová, Lucie (2008). "Aktualizováno: Psi, kteří plenili v pražské zoo, utekli při venčení". Pražský Deník. Archived from the original on 2020-07-29. Retrieved 2015-11-06.
  3. ^ a b c "Milada čtyři roky po odchodu squaterů dál chátrá, převod vily se vleče". iDNES. 30 June 2013. Archived from the original on 29 July 2020. Retrieved 28 September 2020.
  4. ^ a b Trnka, Jan; Novák, Arnošt (2018). "Squatting in Prague". In Squatting Everywhere Kollective (ed.). Fighting for spaces, fighting for our lives: Squatting movements today (1 ed.). Münster: edition assemblage. pp. 151–166. ISBN 9783942885904.
  5. ^ "Poslední pražský squat, vila Milada, má namále. Vyklízí ji bezpečnostní agentura". Hospodářské Noviny. Ihned. 2009. Archived from the original on 2020-07-29. Retrieved 2015-11-06.
  6. ^ a b Dunn, Kevin (24 August 2012). "Anarcho-punk and resistance in everyday life". Punk & Post Punk. 1 (2): 201–218. doi:10.1386/punk.1.2.201_1.
  7. ^ a b Kuřík, Bob; Novák, Arnošt (17 February 2020). "Rethinking radical activism: Heterogeneity and dynamics of political squatting in Prague after 1989". Journal of Urban Affairs. 42 (2): 203–221. doi:10.1080/07352166.2019.1565820. S2CID 159082940.
  8. ^ a b c Novák, Arnošt; Pixová, Michaela. "Prague Post-1989: Boom, decline and renaissance" (PDF). Baltic Worlds: 34–45. Archived (PDF) from the original on 2018-04-12. Retrieved 2020-09-28.
  9. ^ Heller, Jakub (9 January 2019). "Ladronka, Milada či Klinika. Připomeňte si známé squaty a jejich neslavné konce". Aktuálně (in Czech). Archived from the original on 3 February 2019. Retrieved 28 September 2020.
  10. ^ Cameron, Rob (2009). "Eviction of Milada squat becomes political cause célèbre". RadioPrague. Archived from the original on 2016-03-04. Retrieved 2015-11-06.
  11. ^ "Prague: No to demolition of Milada". squat!net. 2009. Archived from the original on 2016-03-08. Retrieved 2015-11-06.
  12. ^ Falvey, Christian (2012). "Police crackdown on squatters in the Milada mansion". RadioPrague. Archived from the original on 2016-03-04. Retrieved 2015-11-06.
  13. ^ "Soudy musí znovu řešit přiměřenost policejního zásahu ve squatu Milada". iDNES. 2015. Archived from the original on 2015-09-14. Retrieved 2015-11-06.
  14. ^ Léblová, Kristýna (3 February 2019). "Vila Milada, kterou před 10 lety museli opustit squatteři, dál chátrá – Novinky.cz". Novinky. Archived from the original on 28 September 2020. Retrieved 28 September 2020.
  15. ^ Duplák, Martin (15 January 2021). "Karlova univerzita koupila bývalý squat Milada. Zaplatila za něj necelých 60 milionů". ČT24 - Nejdůvěryhodnější zpravodajský web v ČR - Česká televize (in Czech). Retrieved 18 October 2021.

External linksEdit