Industrial Renovation: The Gasometers of Vienna
History of the Vienna Gas Tanks
The Gasometers of Vienna date back to 1896 when Viennese authorities decided it was time to invest in large-scale gas and electric utilities. In just three years, the city built Europe’s largest gas plant (which included the four gasometers) and laid more than 500 km (300 miles) of gas lines.
Over time, natural gas replaced coal gas, and the gasometers were no longer needed. The gas plant was permanently shut down in 1984. After their decommission they were used for various purposes, including: a set in the movie James Bond: The Living Daylights and as a venue to host the Gazometer Raves. Sound in the large round structures reverberated and exhibited a special echo that was popular to the ravers in attendance.
Eventually, Vienna undertook a remodelling and revitalization of the protected monuments; and in 1995 called for ideas for the new use of the structures. The chosen designs by the architects Jean Nouvel (Gasometer A), Coop Himmelblau (Gasometer B), Manfred Wehdorn (Gasometer C) and Wilhelm Holzbauer (Gasometer D) were completed between 1999 and 2001. Each gasometer was divided into several zones for living (apartments in the top), working (offices in the middle floors) and entertainment and shopping (shopping malls in the ground floors). The shopping mall levels in each gasometer are connected to the others by skybridges. The original contract budget was $150 million Euros.
The Gasometers Industrial Renovation
The Gasometers are four cylindrical telescopic gas containers, each with a volume of about 90,000 cubic meters or approx. 3.18 million cubic feet. Each tank is enclosed by a red-brick facade. They are each 70 meters (230 ft) tall and 60 meters (197 ft) in diameter. The Gasometers were gutted during the remodelling and only the brick exterior and parts of the roof were left standing.
Additional Features Include:
- Over 70 shops, restaurants, bars and cafes
- A multiplex cinema with 12 screens
- An events hall with room for 4,200 people
- A daycare center
- The Vienna National Archive
- 11,000 square meters (118,403 sq ft) of office space.
- 615 apartments
- A 230-bed student dormitory
If you enjoyed this article, the Sifter highly recommends: Holy Conversion – Church From 1790s Renovated and Restored