Construction company STRABAG has received a contract to convert the French Hall of the Vienna Künstlerhaus in Austria for the Vienna State Opera, into a new opera venue.

The Vienna State Opera’s new modern performance and rehearsal space, which will comprise up to 279 seats, is intended especially for young audiences and emerging talents.

Strabag CEO Thomas Birtel said: “We select our projects with great care in order to make a lasting and focused contribution. These long-term commitments help us focus on next-generation talents, children and young people.

“With the Vienna State Opera, we have found a partner for whom long-term commitment is just as important. We are proud that our support will secure the future of this internationally renowned opera house, which is so important for Austria as a cultural nation, for decades to come.”

The renovation, which is planned to be completed in September 2024, is being carried out under a public-private partnership arrangement with the project estimated to cost of €20.5m.

Vienna State Opera project partners include Künstlerhausbesitz und -betriebs (KBBG), Strabag, Haselsteiner Familien-Privatstiftung and the Federal Ministry of Arts and Culture, Civil Service and Sport.

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The project has received €5m grant from the federal ministry and €10m from Strabag through sponsoring.

Haselsteiner Familien-Privatstiftung is financing the remaining €5.5m for the project.

Strabag said the first phase of construction is planned for completion in September 2021.

Since the vibrations from construction would affect, three exhibitions planned to be held in the neighbouring Albertina Modern from October 2021 to January 2023.

The firm plans to resume work on the project in February 2023.


Illustration of the new stage for Vienna State Opera. Credit: STRABAG SE.