Vienna arena construction delay angers Opp

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Austria Vienna Arena update June 2020 Image: Wien Holding GmbH

The planned Wien Holding Arena in Vienna (capital of Austria) will – in all likelihood – go off the ground only in 2026. Till then, the Wiener Stadthalle will have to run the show. This piece of news has not gone down well with the Opposition.

The current Wiener Stadthalle no longer fully meets the technical requirements for large live productions. With the construction of a new state-of-the-art arena, the Austrian capital is to be further strengthened as a cultural, congress and tourism metropolis.

The new Wien Holding Arena for around 20,000 people is to correspond with Vienna’s importance as a Central European metropolis. The new arena intends to be among the most modern and largest arenas in Europe and will help to build new bridges to the culture, media or technology clusters already based in St. Marx. The new arena will form a high-quality architectural ensemble.

Wiener Stadthalle is a multipurpose indoor arena and convention center located in Vienna and can accommodate 16,000 spectators.

In a meeting of the Vienna City Council held recently, a request was made to the City Councilor for Sports, Peter Hacker (SPÖ – Social Democratic Party of Austria). Caroline Hungerländer (ÖVP – Austrian People’s Party) asked about the Viennese sports facility development plan and the future use of the Wiener Stadthalle to which Hacker replied, “The new Wien Holding Arena will be a multifunctional hall which will be able to pack in a crowd of 20,000. From today’s perspective, this arena will go into operation in 2026 – at least until then the Wiener Stadthalle must remain fully functional”.

Nevertheless, a “comprehensive inventory of the structural structure” has already been initiated for the town hall. According to Hacker, this analysis should check all elements of the building – which are also partially listed – “from the foundation to the roof rack”.

He further informed that the whole inventory angle will take two years. Only on the basis of the inventory examination “can we then make concrete plans as to how we can possibly rebuild the town hall”.

The above development has come in for a lot of flak from the ÖVP. City Councilor Markus Wölbitsch has said that the entire development comes with a lot of loopholes.

Added Wölbitsch, “In a COVID-19-struck planet, when we are pulling out all stops to revive the economy, the Wien Holding Arena project holds significance in terms of business. The planned multipurpose hall can create and secure jobs. Delaying the project to 2026 does not augur well for the economy which has been devastated due to the pandemic.”

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