• Registered Sector

    Historic area of Soroca (ongoing registration procedure)

  • Historical Function

    Commercial and defense

  • Administrative Status

    Capital of the Soroca District

Location and site

Soroca is a historic town located in the north-eastern part of the Republic of Moldova, on the border with Ukraine, 160 km from the country capital. It is situated on the western bank of the river Nistru (Dniester) where a meander forms abrupt banks which suited for defence in the past.

Urban Morphology

Soroca is well-known for its medieval history and the fifteenth-century fortress, one of the four preserved Moldovan border fortifications (the other three are Tighina, Hotin and Cetatea Alba). The Historic Area of the city is located on the bank of Nistru on a 121.7-hectare site and contains 58 listed historic monuments. It consists of an older part with narrow irregular streets, and a modern part with rectangular street grid built under the tsarist regime in the XIX-th century. Near the Soroca’s older part is situated the former Bujerauca village which is mostly built with traditional Moldovan houses. The modern town situated south of the fortress has mostly neo-classical, eclectic and neo-Romanian style buildings with one or two storeys, a number of churches, educational and administrative facilities.

The historic area suffered destructions during the Second World War and the following post-war reconstructions, when many houses were replaced with multi-storey apartment blocks. These constructions caused serious damage to the historic urban texture and to the existing landscape, a lot of the old buildings remained isolated and without access to the major road infrastructure.   

Historical Reference

Major events that have shape the history of the city.

  • The oldest evidence of human existence in the region dates from Paleolithic (sec. XI-XII BCE).
  • The first documentary mention is on 12 July 1499 by Coste, castellan of Soroca. Because of its strategic geographical location on the ford of the Nistru river, the town played an important role for the Principality of Moldova during the middle Ages. For centuries, it was the administrative, commercial, agricultural and military centre of the Soroca District.
  • The stone fortress was built at the beginning of the 16th century by Transylvanian architects during the reign of Petru Rares, to replace an old wooden one. The construction has a perfectly round shape with five towers, each an equal distance from one another. Usually, only the soldiers lived in the castle, but in times of invasions it offered shelter for local people too. The town developed freely around the fortress and along the “Old Road” – a commercial route to link the fortress to the city of Suceava, back then the capital of the country. The town surface expansion was limited by the river Nistru in the East, streamlet Racovat in the North and high, forested hills in the West.
  • In 1812 Soroca town came under the rule of the Russian Empire, and in addition to the native population of Moldovans/Romanians, many Ukrainians, Russians and Jews settled down here. By the middle of the 19th century, when the first urban plan was developed, the city began to expand to South. The medieval street grid in the North was less affected, while the old part around the fortress was totally replaced with rectangular districts. 
  • In the interwar period (1918-1940), the town was part of Romania. During these years several buildings of neo-classic and neo-Romanian style were built and rehabilitation for some public spaces was initiated.
  • Under Soviet regime (1944-1991) a great part of the old buildings were demolished and replaced with standardized blocks with apartments. Some infrastructure interventions caused serious damage to the existing housing stock by depriving it access to the roads.
  • In 1991 following the signature of the Declaration of Independence, the Republic of Moldova was formed. Like other cities in the country, Soroca has been undergoing severe economic and social crisis with negative impact on the urban environment. Many old houses were demolished, others suffered obsolete interventions. The new building stock is of a limited architectural quality and does not correspond to the original specific of the place. In this period the famous “Roma Hill” was built, a district with very large oriental villas inhabited by the Roma minority.

Mr Victor Său

Mayor of Soroca

Mr. Victor Sau
Mayor of Soroca
City Hall of Soroca
Str. Stefan cel Mare, 5
MD 3006 Soroca, Republic of Moldova
Tel:
(+373) 230 22800
Fax:

Email:
msoroca@mtc-sr.md
Mr Vladimir Caldare
Public relation specialist
City Hall of Soroca
Str. Stefan cel Mare, 5
MD 3006 Soroca, Republic of Moldova
Tel:
(+373) 68 327770 / (+373) 230 22341
Fax:

Email:
msoroca@mtc-sr.md
Mr Grigore Gutu
Chief Architect of Soroca
City Hall of Soroca
Str. Stefan cel Mare, 5
MD 3006 Soroca, Republic of Moldova
Tel:
(+373) 69 156152 / (+373) 230 23236
Fax:

Email:
ggutu@mail.ru
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