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Canadian Urbanism Uncovered

Urban Planet: Bulgaria’s Klek Shops

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Urban Planet is a daily roundup of blogs from around the world dealing specifically with urban environments. We’ll be on the lookout for websites outside the country that approach themes related to urban experiences and issues.

The fall of the Berlin Wall yielded some pretty interesting urban economies in Bulgaria. After the fall of Communism, when private ownership of production was legalized, basement shops, called ‘klek’ shops (in English, knee shops), began to spring up in Sofia. The basement locations were affordable for entrepreneurs just starting their new businesses. The shops tend to sell cigarettes,  snacks and alcoholic and soft drinks, some also provide services, such as shoe repair. The shops are so low that customers must squat to interact with the vendor. (PopUp City)
Image from PopUp City

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