Althan Quartier Austria

Delugan Meissl Associated Architects as Architects

Franz-Josefs-Bahnhof, which is located on Julius-Tandler-Platz in Vienna’s 9th District, was opened in its current, familiar form in 1978 and, alongside its core function as a railway station, can look back over a richly varying history of use. Efforts that have been made in recent years to lend the location a contemporary character with the name “Althan Quartier” have included a number of urban design studies related to the question of how the existing buildings can be remodelled in line with a wide range of new requirements and best integrated into its urban context. In addition to gaining the acceptance of the neighbouring population, the decisive objectives of the development project included the permeability to pedestrians, the opening up to Julius-Tandler-Platz, the creation of the broadest possible mix of uses and the obligatory densification of a central urban zone. 


The concept developed by DMAA in cooperation with Josef Weichenberger architects + Partner attempts to meet these requirements by very precisely addressing the existing buildings. This strategy is principally demonstrated by the decision to strip the part of the complex designed by Karl Schwanzer that faces the square back to its powerfully sculptural load-bearing structure and to create additional open areas and a sense of spatial depth by removing the apparently hermetically-sealed mirror-glass façade. The arguments for retaining this existing built substance are not only ecological but also include the great spatial quality and flexibility of this modular structure, which is imbued with the spirit of modernism.

 
The generous opening up of the base creates the desired spatial relationship with Julius-Tandler-Platz and increases the attractiveness of the station concourse while establishing an inviting connection between the new urban terrace and the central courtyard via the station, which becomes the focal point of the neighbouring spaces with their largely public functions. This courtyard also contains the new pedestrian connections between Althanstraße and Nordbergstraße. The internal spaces receive additional daylight via two new atria, which can be carved with minimum disruption out of the existing building thanks to the clear structural logic of the prefabricated concrete slabs. The densification referred to above is achieved through the construction of two new stories, which are stepped back in line with the contours of the building volume and will therefore merge, almost unnoticed, into the physiognomy of the existing urban fabric.
The subtle approach to the specific characteristics and architectural quality of the existing building is particularly highlighted by the juxtaposition of the serial aesthetic of the industrial building and the atmospheric qualities of its contemporary new interpretation. The wide range of urban movement and meeting spaces, areas for local facilities, shops, services, offices and apartments will enable the Althan Quartier to do justice to its potential significance as an open neighbourhood centre that creates a strong sense of identity while also functioning as an inviting public transport hub. 

Read story in Deutsch

Featured Projects
Latest Products
News
Nature, character, and transparency form create a harmonic balance that characterizes this latest house by the Garcés de Seta Bonet
4 Aug 2022 News
Nature, character, and transparency form create a harmonic balance that characterizes this latest house by the Garcés de Seta Bonet

Surrounded by nature and with a broad view over Catalonia's Costa Brava landscape, Garcés de... More

Les Grandes Terres reconstruction and extension project brings a sophisticated urbanity to its Paris neighbourhood
4 Aug 2022 News
Les Grandes Terres reconstruction and extension project brings a sophisticated urbanity to its Paris neighbourhood

Adding to the urbanity of a Paris neighbourhood, this project by Hesters-Oyon Architectes involves t... More

BLAF architecten experiment through their dynamic House hkZ design with the essential components of the single-family home
4 Aug 2022 News
BLAF architecten experiment through their dynamic House hkZ design with the essential components of the single-family home

Belgian practice BLAF architecten is known for exploring complex housing sustainability, affordabili... More

Sculptural, flower-shaped Holland Casino Venlo by MVSA Architects displays a colourful, interactive facade
4 Aug 2022 News
Sculptural, flower-shaped Holland Casino Venlo by MVSA Architects displays a colourful, interactive facade

Located close to the German border, Holland Casino Venlo is a flower-shaped, sculptural building by... More

Seichii Yamada & Associates reimagine the traditional Japanese house in a striking silver façade
3 Aug 2022 News
Seichii Yamada & Associates reimagine the traditional Japanese house in a striking silver façade

Located in Shizuoka city in Japan, House in Nishichiyoda designed by Seichii Yamada & Associates... More

Sigurd Larsen designs a black timber-clad cabin that resonates with Nature
3 Aug 2022 News
Sigurd Larsen designs a black timber-clad cabin that resonates with Nature

Danish Architect Sigurd Larsen designs a tiny cabin retreat in collaboration with Berlin-based hospi... More

Making infrastructure do more: MVRDV and StudioPOD complete One Green Mile in Mumbai
3 Aug 2022 News
Making infrastructure do more: MVRDV and StudioPOD complete One Green Mile in Mumbai

Recently completed in Mumbai, the One Green Mile project by MVRD and StudioPOD transforms a series o... More

John McAslan + Partners take a ‘Fabric First’ approach to the renovation and enhancement of Glasgow’s celebrated Burrell Collection building
3 Aug 2022 News
John McAslan + Partners take a ‘Fabric First’ approach to the renovation and enhancement of Glasgow’s celebrated Burrell Collection building

Glasgow’s Burrell Collection includes 9,000 works of fine and decorative arts spanning 600 yea... More