Client: Stadtgemeinde Leoben, Leoben
Location: Kirchplatz 1, A-8700 Leoben
Start of planning: 02/1995
Start of construction: 12/1995
Completion: 04/1997
Built-up area: 2.758 m²
Usable area: 3.659 m²
Exhibition area: 2.880 m²
Cost: 7,5 Mio Euro

On the occasion of the Regional Exhibition MADE IN STYRIA 1997 the Stadtmuseum Leoben, which was housed in the north-eastern section of the former Jesuit College, was transformed into a modern museum and exhibition complex. Significant new elements consist in the symbolic tower-like entrance building that includes a lift which opens up the entire building complex for disabled persons. Between the existing buildings, museum and town hall, an art hall (Kunsthalle) was installed underground that is daylit through a glass roof. This new space which is equipped with a special light prism glazing, together with the hall of the town hall forms a large exhibition surface for special exhibitions whereas the redesigned hall of the town hall can also in future be used individually. The area between the museum and the town hall is enhanced within the urban context. A generously designed complex of ramps and stairs in connection with a water basin shaped in cascades connects the inner city area with the promenade alongside the river Mur. At the end of the ramp complex there is a belvedere hovering freely above the river and above that Café Styria is spectacularly juting out into the river.
The museum which will present itself with a new exhibition concept to the public after the regional exhibition, has received an additional three-storey building (ground floor and two top floors) on the courtyard side. This building houses administration, library and workshops on the ground floor and offers an additional exhibition area on the two top floors. Also, the diocesan museum of the church to Saint Franz Xaver has been linked via the municipal museum.
The reconstruction of the Mur quay from Waasenbrücke to the footbridge and the redesign of the yard in front of the town house round up the extensive construction and redevelopment activities on the occasion of the Regional Exhibition 1997. The aim of the architects was to create a contemporary, multi-use museum, event and exhibition building for the city of Leoben.

Photos: Paul Ott, Graz