Arsenal (Vienna)

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Vienna Arsenal: Object 1, the former commandant's building on Ghegastraße, today a residential building with offices, access to the Army History Museum

The Arsenal in Vienna is a former military building complex in the southeast of the city, in the 3rd district of Vienna . The mighty complex , consisting of several brick buildings , is located on a rectangular floor plan on a hill south of the Landstraßer belt .


The arsenal is the most important secular assembly of Romantic Historicism in Vienna and was executed in Italian-Medieval and Byzantine- Moorish forms. The system has essentially been preserved in its original form; only the former workshop buildings within the bounding wing visible from the outside were replaced by new buildings.

History until 1945

Bird's eye view of the arsenal complex, looking east, lithograph , Alexander Kaiser, 1855
Vienna Arsenal: Army History Museum (object 18), behind it the former commandant's building (object 1), behind it Schweizergarten and Landstraßer Gürtel
Ruins of object 15 (northeast next to the Army History Museum) after the air raids in 1944

The plant, with a total of 31 "objects" (buildings) was the occasion of the March Revolution of 1848 was built from 1849 to 1856 and was the first building of the old Viennese city walls detaching fortress triangle with the Rossauer barracks and the now-defunct Franz-Joseph Barracks on Stubenring. These buildings should not serve to keep external enemies from the city, but to secure state power in the event of revolutionary uprisings in Vienna. The decision to build the arsenal was made by the 19-year-old Emperor Franz Joseph I who came to the throne on December 2, 1848 .

The design for the k. k. Artillery arsenal came from General Artillery Director Vincenz Freiherr von Augustin , to whom the construction management was subsequently transferred. Under his leadership, the buildings were planned by the architects Carl Roesner , Antonius Pius de Riegel, August Sicard von Sicardsburg , Eduard van der Nüll , Theophil von Hansen and Ludwig Förster and built by the company of the master builder Leopold Mayr .

From 1853 to 1856 the architect was to plans Carl Roesner the Arsenal church built. The kk Hof-Waffenmuseum , later the kk Heeresmuseum (from 1889 kuk Heeresmuseum), today the Army History Museum , housed in its own representative, free-standing wing, was completed in 1856, but was not accessible for the first time until 1869.

177 million bricks were used to build the arsenal. The construction costs totaled 8.5 million guilders . In the period that followed, there were repeated extensions.

From 1869 to 1907 the arsenal housed the kuk artillery cadet school . Their school buildings were on the south-eastern edge of the arsenal and enclosed the arsenal church on three sides. In October 1900, the construction of a new artillery cadet school began in Traiskirchen , which in 1907 replaced the previous artillery cadet school in the Vienna arsenal.

During the two world wars, the building complex of the Vienna Arsenal served as an arms factory and depot, but above all as a barracks . The highest number of employees in the arsenal was reached in the First World War with around 20,000 employees. After 1918, the military-industrial company with its own steelworks was converted into a public service institution called “ Österreichische Werke Arsenal ”. However, there were almost insoluble conversion problems during the transition to peace production, the product range was too large and the mismanagement was considerable. The number of employees fell continuously, and the company became one of the great economic scandals of the First Republic.

Until the autumn of 1938 the area belonged to the 10th district, Favoriten . However, when the Reichsgau Groß-Wien was built during the “Third Reich” , the arsenal complex and the areas to the southeast of it became part of the 3rd district as part of the district boundary changes.

During the Second World War , tank repair workshops of the Waffen SS were set up in the arsenal . In the last two years of the war, several buildings were badly damaged by bombs. In the course of the Battle of Vienna , from April 7th to 9th 1945, the arsenal, defended by the 3rd SS Panzer Division "Totenkopf" , was the focus of the fighting, with the Red Army taking heavy losses before its victory had to record.

History from 1945

There are three elongated depot buildings (objects 4, 6 and 15), here object 6 on Arsenalstrasse
Arsenal property 3, corner of Ghegastraße / Arsenalstraße (today residential building)
The directional radio tower, part of the telecommunications center built from 1973 to 1978 at Arsenal 22

After severe bomb damage during World War II, the arsenal buildings were largely restored to their original shape.

In the southern part and in the former inner courtyard of the arsenal, several new buildings were added, including the decoration workshops of the federal theaters from 1959 to 1963 based on plans by architects Erich Boltenstern and Robert Weinlich . From 1961 to 1963 the central telecommunications office was built according to plans by the architect Fritz Pfeffer . From 1973 to 1975 the company and office buildings of the Post and Telegraph Directorate for Vienna, Lower Austria and Burgenland (today the Arsenal Technology Center of Telekom Austria ) with the 150 meter high radio tower Wien-Arsenal were built according to the plans of the architect Kurt Eckel . In the 1990s, a rehearsal stage for the Burgtheater was built according to plans by Gustav Peichl .

The Austrian research and testing center Arsenal , now Arsenal Research , which has made a name for itself with one of the largest climatic chambers in the world (now moved to Floridsdorf , see Rail Tec Arsenal ), was also housed in the complex. A smaller part of the complex is still used today by the Austrian army as barracks. The Central Disinfection Institute of the City of Vienna , the Central Chemical Laboratory of the Federal Monuments Office and the Economic Research Institute are also housed in the arsenal. The Army History Museum uses several objects as depots.

Objects 1, 2, 3, 5, 12, 14, 15 and 16 were converted into residential buildings. Objects 7 to 11 were newly built as residential buildings. The arsenal forms its own census district comprising two census districts, which according to the 2001 census had 2,058 inhabitants.

At the end of 2003 the arsenal was sold to a group of private investors in connection with other properties by the state-owned Federal Real Estate Company (BIG). Since the beginning of 2006, the Baden lawyer Rudolf Fries and the industrialist Walter Scherb have been majority owners of the 72,000 m 2 historic complex, which they want to renovate and, if possible, rent again . Fries also plans to enlarge the existing living space by more than half (around 40,000 m 2 ).

Some objects have been adapted for use by the Vienna University of Technology since 2010 : Object 227, the so-called “Panzerhalle”, will house the laboratories of the Institute for Vehicle Drives and Automotive Technology . Laboratories of the Institute for Energy Technology and Thermodynamics and the Institute for Production Engineering and Photonic Technologies are set up in object 221, the "Siemens Hall". In addition to the Technical Test and Research Institute (TVFA), object 214 also houses the second and third stages of the “Vienna Scientific Cluster”, a supercomputer that was jointly built by the Vienna University of Technology, the University of Vienna and the University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences .

In 2013–2015 , Wien Energie built the new Arsenal district heating plant on the site , Austria's largest fossil-fired heating plant with an output of 340 MW. The system works with two boilers, which can be fired with natural gas or heating oil. Approx. This means that 70,000 households can be supplied with district heating.

Transport links

Historically, the arsenal was mainly accessed via the Landstrasse belt. Today the A23 city motorway, known as the Südosttangente , runs to the south-east in the immediate vicinity and connects to the Gürtel / Landstraßer Hauptstraße. The Ostbahn runs south-west of the area, while the new Vienna Central Station connects to the Arsenal in the west. Two new bridges over the Ostbahn, the Arsenalsteg and the Südbahnhofbrücke , and an underpass in the course of Ghegastraße and Alfred-Adler-Straße create the connection to the Sonnwendviertel in the 10th district, which is on the former site of the freight station Vienna Südbahnhof is erected.

On the city center side, between Arsenal and Landstraßer Gürtel, there is the former Maria Josefa Park, now known as the Schweizergarten . Here on Arsenalstrasse is the 21er Haus , a branch of the Austrian Gallery Belvedere , renamed Belvedere 21 at the beginning of 2018 . At the edge of the center of the Schweizergarten, the busy S-Bahn main line has the Wien Quartier Belvedere stop , where the trams D, 18 and O operated by Wiener Linien also stop. The 69A bus connects the Arsenal via Arsenalstrasse and the Sonnwendviertel with Vienna Central Station .

See also


  • Anton Dolleczek: History of the Austrian artillery from the earliest times to the present. Written from authentic and mostly official sources. Vienna 1887.
  • Dehio manual. The art monuments of Austria: Vienna. II. To IX. and XX. District, III. Landstrasse district, monumental buildings. Arsenal. Verlag Anton Schroll & Co, Vienna 1993, ISBN 3-7031-0680-8 , pp. 73-77.
  • Army History Museum / Military History Institute (ed.): The Army History Museum in the Vienna Arsenal . Verlag Militaria , Vienna 2016, ISBN 978-3-902551-69-6
  • Peter & Wolfgang Schubert: The Vienna Arsenal. Mayer & Comp, Klosterneuburg 2003, ISBN 3-902177-03-9 .
  • Josef Gerdenitsch: The Vienna Arsenal in the First Republic; the political, economic and military importance in the years 1918–1927 . Dissertation. University of Vienna, 1968.
  • Erich Schroll, Alfred Diemling: Arsenal 2000; Federal Testing and Research Institute Arsenal; on the occasion of the 40th anniversary . Metrica-Fachverlag Bartak, 1990, ISBN 3-900368-19-8 .
  • Richard Hufschmied: The immediate post-war plans for the Vienna Arsenal and the Army History Museum , in: Viribus Unitis. Annual report 2003 of the Heeresgeschichtliches Museum , Vienna 2004, pp. 51–60.

Especially on the economic and social problem of the arsenal after the First World War:

  • Rudolf Gerlich: The failed alternative. Socialization in Austria after the First World War. Vienna 1980.
  • Ferdinand Steiner: The broken arsenal in Vienna. Vienna 1926.

Web links

Commons : Arsenal (Vienna)  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. Anton Dolleczek: history of Austrian artillery from the earliest times to the present. Written from authentic and mostly official sources. Vienna 1887, p. 350.
  2. Johann Christoph Allmayer-Beck : The Army History Museum Vienna. The museum and its representative rooms. Salzburg 1981, p. 9
  3. Österreichische Werke, Gemeinwirtschaftliche Anstalt in Vienna (brief description of the Arsenal scandal)
  4. Manfried Rauchsteiner : Phoenix from the ashes. Destruction and reconstruction of the Army History Museum from 1944 to 1955 . Accompanying volume of the special exhibition of the Army History Museum June 21 to October 20, 2005, Vienna 2005, ISBN 3-85028-411-5 , p. 23 f.
  5. Statistics Austria (ed.): Directory 2001 Vienna. Vienna 2005, p. 40.
  6. Irina Frühmann In: Wirtschaftsblatt daily newspaper , Vienna, December 9, 2007
  7. Werner F. Sommer: Start for the “Science Center” of the TU Vienna at the Arsenal . Technical University of Vienna. December 7, 2010. Retrieved February 27, 2011.
  8. ^ Vienna Scientific Cluster
  9. The standard
  10. Fernheizwerk Arsenal. Wien Energie, accessed on August 16, 2016 .


  1. Used as barracks after it was closed. - See: Individual records for the Trieste Infantry Cadet School .
    The (no longer existing) school buildings were located on the south-eastern edge of the arsenal site (today: Lilienthalgasse 9, 9A, 9B) and enclosed on three sides the arsenal church (restored after 1945) .

Coordinates: 48 ° 10 ′ 55 ″  N , 16 ° 23 ′ 27 ″  E