GHOST TOWN: ZTS DUBNICA NAD VAHOM, SLOVAKIA
During the pre-World War II era, most of the arms production which had developed since World War II was located in the Slovak Republic. The decision to locate so much of the defence industry in Slovakia was made after the Communists assumed power, due to Slovakia’s location next to the Soviet border. After the democratic revolution of 1989, Czechoslovakia committed itself to a severe reduction of arms production.
At the peak of production, there were approximately 16,000 people employed in one of the biggest factories in the country and the biggest arms producing factory in former Czechoslovakia: ZTS Dubnica nad Vahom. As the consequence of the political and economic situation, most of the people were laid off or were pressured to quit their jobs. Quite a big part of the production was happening underground, where the production lines were hidden strategically to survive aerial attacks during World War II. The whole region used to work there. Everything in the town of Dubnica nad Vahom was built around the factory, including recreational facilities.