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The New Gasteig

We want the Gasteig to continue to be an appealing, vibrant and inclusive place of arts, culture and education. The redevelopment of our building with its more than 90,000 m² aims to make the Gasteig fit for the future.

The facade of the New Gasteig in the evening light, seen from Rosenheimer Straße
Copyright: Henn

The future Gasteig

More light, more air, more open spaces

The Gasteig opens up! In the course of redevelopment, parts of the brick façade will be replaced with glass. Visible from afar, The “glazed bridge” will connect all of the existing parts of the building, bringing the various Gasteig establishments even closer together. It signals that the Gasteig is inclusive and accessible and, as a vibrant meeting place, it forms a bridge to the city. With new public activity spaces, cultural education will play an even bigger role in Europe’s largest arts centre in future. The entire Gasteig will have disabled access and will be interconnected and transparent. Literally a high point of the remodelled Gasteig will be a new vantage point on the roof of the Philharmonic Hall. High above the Isar river, it will offer an impressive view of the city. Open to all visitors, it will also host a small rooftop restaurant.

Video tour

Munich-based architecture office Henn has produced a video to demonstrate their vision of the future Gasteig. With its transparent, open architecture, the renovated and remodelled Gasteig aims to gain worldwide recognition as “Munich’s pulsating cultural heart”. This video tour is based on a 3D model of the New Gasteig. It was generated using the BIM (Building Information Modelling) method, which digitally records and models all relevant building data to help improve the planning process.

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Europe’s largest arts centre is being redeveloped

The initial decision to redevelop the Gasteig was born out of technical necessity. After more than 35 years of operation, most of the 200-plus technical installations in the Gasteig have either reached or exceeded their average lifespan. The regular operation of the buildings with an average of 150,000 visitors per month can therefore no longer be continued. This increases the risk that vital technical systems (such as the sprinkler system) fail, and any such failure would mean a partial or full closure of the building. When we examined various renovation options, we found that the only sensible solution was to completely renew all building services while also modernising and upgrading the building itself. Against the backdrop of a constantly growing and evolving city, we saw this as an opportunity to equip the Gasteig for the challenges of the coming decades.

Redevelopment milestones

In July 2015, the Munich City Council commissions Gasteig München GmbH to draw up a user requirements specification for the future Gasteig in cooperation with its users. At the same time, Munich’s building department is commissioned to examine the building stock.

In April 2017, the Munich City Council decides by a large majority to launch an architectural competition for the Gasteig’s redevelopment based of the user requirements specification. At the same time, the search for a possible interim venue for the duration of the redevelopment begins.

A total of 17 architectural firms from all over Europe take part in the international architectural competition for the Gasteig’s redevelopment. In May 2018, a top-class jury awards prizes to the designs of three offices: Auer Weber (Munich), Henn (Munich) and wulf architekten (Stuttgart). In October 2018, the Munich City Council chooses Munich-based Henn GmbH, together with landscape architects Rainer Schmidt Landschaftsarchitekten, to make the Gasteig fit for the future.  The acoustics for the New Gasteig are to be designed by Yasuhisa Toyota and his company Nagata Acoustics International.

In July 2019, architect Gunter Henn and landscape architect Rainer Schmidt sign the contracts for planning the redevelopment together with former Gasteig Managing Director Max Wagner.

The plan for the redeveloped Gasteig is completed. On schedule in June 2020, the Henn architectural office presents the results of the preliminary planning, with the project remaining within the specified budget of 450 million euros. In December 2020, the Munich City Council opts for an investor model to finance the redevelopment of the Gasteig and commissions the city’s building department with the tendering process.

On 8 October 2021, after a mere 18 months of construction work, the interim premises Gasteig HP8 open in Sendling with a gala concert by the Munich Philharmonic in the new Isarphilharmonie.

In April 2022, the City of Munich invites tenders from investors for the refurbishment of the Gasteig building in Haidhausen. Due to fundamental changes in the economic situation in the course of 2022 and other factors, no suitable application was forthcoming by February 2023 and the contract award process was therefore cancelled. The Munich City Council instructs the administration to investigate possible options for further proceedings and to present these by autumn 2023.

Until the refurbishment work begins, the Gasteig building in Haidhausen is available for interim usage. To this end, a “main interim user” is selected, who has the task of subletting the premises to other users from the cultural and social sectors. In February 2023, Gasteig München GmbH concludes a contract on behalf of the City of Munich with the non-profit limited liability company Fat Cat, which expires at the end of 2024. The first tenants move into the Fat Cat in May 2023.

 

Partnering Up for the Gasteig’s Renovation

Following an assessment of the available options by Munich city council, it was decided in December by a large majority to go ahead with the refurbishment of the Gasteig. The costs are estimated at around 710 million euros. The city aims to set up a company to oversee the Gasteig project and press ahead with the renovation using a partnership model. An external partner to carry out the refurbishment work is to be commissioned by the end of 2026 at the latest. The planning and construction work is expected to take six years.

In March 2024, the City of Munich chose MRG Münchner Raumentwicklungsgesellschaft to oversee the Gasteig refurbishment project. Originally founded to realise the Messestadt Riem project, which is now wholly owned by the City of Munich, has already completed many construction and infrastructure projects. For the Gasteig project, MRG will partner up with a construction company from the private sector.

The building of the New Gasteig seen from above
A bird’s eye view of the New Gasteig. Copyright: Henn
Group picture of around 200 people involved in the renovation of the Gasteig.
Kick-off of the Gasteig redevelopment. Copyright: Robert Haas / Gasteig

Friends of the New Gasteig

Frau Dr. May und Herr Dr. Eckert lehnen auf einer blauen Brüstung eines Balkons in der Halle E
“We are looking forward to a Gasteig that realises the full potential of this location.”Dr Susanne May & Dr Martin Ecker, Managing Directors of the Münchner Volkshochschule adult education centre
Lydia Grün in a jacket, outside in front of a building front
“Our students are the cultural generation of the future.”Prof. Lydia Grün, President of the University of Music and Performing Arts Munich
Stephanie Jenke stands in the fugue between Hall E and the Isarphilharmonie
“Europe’s largest arts centre is also set to become its most modern.”Stephanie Jenke, Managing Director of Gasteig München GmbH
Portrait of Diana Iline
“Open and modern in every respect.”Diana Iljine, former Managing Director of Internationale Münchner Filmwochen GmbH
Portrait of Barbara Yelin
“Munich needs culture, and culture needs space for people.”Barbara Yelin, illustrator
Portrait of Zubin Mehta
“The New Gasteig is absolutely essential.”Zubin Mehta, Honorary Conductor of the Munich Philharmonic
Photo of Andreas Schessl
“The hub of Munich’s concert life.”Andreas Schessl, MünchenMusik GmbH & Co. KG
Portrait of Cornelia Lanz
“Culture has a bearing on happiness! The Gasteig contributes to that.”Cornelia Lanz, singer
Marie Preußler and Johannes Härtl
“Tradition, diversity, an established institution and a Munich brand!”Marie Preußler and Johannes Härtl, Directors of Iwanson International GmbH
Portrait of Max Wagner
“Hier bin ich Mensch, hier darf ich‘s sein!” (from Goethe’s Faust)Max Wagner, Managing Director of Gasteig München GmbH 2017–2023
Photo of Dr. Mirjam Zadoff
“Democracy needs participation – and participation needs a place where everyone feels at ease.”Dr Mirjam Zadoff, Director of the NS Documentation Centre
Portrait of Dieter Reiter
“We are investing in our citizens’ quality of life, for whom the Gasteig is like an extension to their home.”Mayor Dieter Reiter
Portrait of Clemens Baumgärtner
“It underscores the high quality of life in our city.”Clemens Baumgärtner, Department of Labour and Economic Affairs of the City of Munich
Portrait of Elke Heidenreich
“I want this happiness to last!”Elke Heidenreich, author
Portrait of Malte Arkona
“I’m looking forward to the New Gasteig and the possibilities it offers.”Malte Arkona, presenter, actor, dubbing artist and singer
Portrait of Dr. Wolfgang Heubisch
“A creative milestone with an impact far beyond Bavaria.”Dr Wolfgang Heubisch, Vice-President of the Bavarian State Parliament
Portrait of Prof. Dr. Wilhelm Simson
“Where art, culture and education meet.”Prof. Dr Wilhelm Simson, Honorary Chair of the Friends and Patrons of the Munich Philharmonic
Portrait of Paul Müller
“The Philharmonic Hall in the New Gasteig is a space full of possibilities, and we are thrilled to share it.”Paul Müller, Executive Director of the Munich Philharmonic
Portrait of Hans-Peter Übleis
“Like a beacon of art and culture, the New Gasteig lights up our city.”Hans-Peter Übleis, Chairman of the Literaturhaus München foundation
Portait of Anton Biebl
“My mobile office is in the new Gasteig.”Anton Biebl of the Department of Arts and Culture of the City of Munich and vice-chair of the supervisory board of the Gasteig München GmbH
Portrait Prof. Claus Reichstaller
“A broadening of interdisciplinary dialogue.”Prof. Claus Reichstaller, jazz trumpeter and director of the Jazz Institute at the University of Music and Performing Arts Munich
“Even more space for participation and engagement.”Friederike Junker, Managing Director of MORGEN e.V., Netzwerk Münchner Migrantenorganisationen
Photo by Dr. Andrea Lissoni and Wolfgang Orthmayr
“A centre that hosts so many sectors of culture with such down-to-earthness.”Dr. Andrea Lissoni and Wolfgang Orthmayr, Managing Directors of Haus der Kunst
Portrait Achim Waseem Seger
“Reaching new sectors of society”Achim Waseem Seger, activist, rapper, poet, DJ and event organiser
Portrait of Maximilian Schöberl
“In happy moments, the arts centre is as inspiring as the performance.”Maximilian Schöberl, BMW and Member of the Board of the Friends and Patrons of the Munich Philharmonic
Portrait of Clemens Schuldt
“Everyone we want to play for is here.”Clemens Schuldt, former principal conductor of the Munich Chamber Orchestra
Portrait of Wilfried Hiller
“The number 1 meeting place for creatives in Bavaria!”Wilfried Hiller, composer
Portrait of Julian Prégardien
“I’m looking forward to encounters without borders.”Julian Prégardien, musician
Portrait of Dr. Arne Ackermann
“The New Gasteig is our Open Library.”Dr. Arne Ackermann, Director of the Munich Public Library
Portrait of Dr. Roger Diederen
“A place for cultural projects with charisma.”Dr. Roger Diederen, Directorate of the Kunsthalle venue of Hypo-Kulturstiftung
Carolin and Isabel, youngest subscribers of the Munich Philharmonics
“We are excited and curious.” Carolin and Isabel, youngest Munich Philharmonic subscribers
A young, blond man in a jacket and shirt.
"We place great store in culture in this city."Dominik Krause, Deputy Mayor and Chair of the Gasteig Supervisory Board
Portrait of Lisa Batiashvili
“Sharing concert experiences with the audience!”Lisa Batiashvili, violonist

FAQs about the redevelopment

The Munich-based architectural firm Henn die Sanierung durch. was commissioned to carry out the renovation in June 2019. Preliminary planning has been completed. You can see some first impressions here.

Risk of closure: After more than 35 years of operation, most of the 200-plus technical installations in the Gasteig have either reached or exceeded their average lifespan. Some of these cannot be repaired as the needed spare parts are no longer available. This  increases the risk that vital technical systems (such as the sprinkler system) fail, and any such failure would mean a partial or full closure of the building. A renovation of the technical building services is therefore necessary.

 

Getting it right from the start: Various renovation options were considered. Comparing these options, it soon became clear that the only sensible solution would be to completely renew all building services while also modernising and upgrading the building itself to equip the Gasteig for the challenges of the future.

 

The Gasteig – Munich’s powerhouse: Last but not least, Munich needs a futureproof Gasteig. By 2030, the city will be home to more than 1.7 million people, and this rapid expansion will add further to its demographic and cultural diversity. This development will make the Gasteig – Munich’s educational and cultural powerhouse – even more vital in years to come. Bringing the Gasteig up to date is an investment in Munich’s intellectual infrastructure that will pay off in the long run by allowing the Gasteig to grow with the city and its needs – in terms of both quantity and quality.

A total demolition and complete rebuild of the Gasteig would cost around 200 million euros more than its redevelopment and would not be very environment-friendly. Furthermore, the residents would have to put up with more construction work for a longer period. Last but not least, a radical reset would take a sledgehammer to the Gasteig’s nearly 40-year-long success story. Many visitors and friends of the Gasteig have emotional ties to the building and its history, and demolishing it would rob Munich of a familiar architectural site.

In December 2023, the City Council decided to pursue the general refurbishment of the Gasteig after a thorough examination of possible options. The costs are estimated at around 710 million euros.