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Wien Hauptbahnhof is a new, state-of-the-art railway station, replacing 2 smaller stations that stood nearby. With more than 145,000 passengers and 1,100 trains passing through every day, it is the main railway station for the Austrian capital, Vienna. Construction began in the summer of 2007 and was completed in autumn 2014. The following year, the station was further enhanced by the addition of a footbridge and a new shopping mall with more than 100 shops.
The new Vienna Central is spread over 50 hectares. It is a through station, rather than a terminus, and acts as a junction for 4 major railway lines that converge on Vienna from the north, south, east and west. As a result of the improvements, national and international travelers are benefiting from improved connectivity. There are now more direct services, and, where a connection is necessary, it is now possible to change trains quickly and conveniently – often at the same platform. The station is also integrated with underground, bus and tram services, and the Südtiroler Platz station, another important hub, can be reached in minutes via a subterranean walkway.
About the project
The 2 old stations covered an area of 109 hectares. They were both demolished and their redundant railway lines removed. Thanks to the compact design of the new station, over 50 hectares of land were freed up – enough for 2 brand new residential districts. Vienna Central and the new residential developments share a key architectural idea: the belief that cities should be open and free of barriers. That is why the station has no classic façade and no sense of front or back. On the contrary, the north and south entrances are of equal importance.
The canopies over the platforms have a complex, angular geometry. They consist of 2 separate sections that part to create a glazed opening, allowing daylight to flood through.
In the station interior, open halls, wide stairways and ceiling apertures create a sense of space and freedom. The architectural details have a simplicity and lightness, which is balanced by the use of high-grade materials such as natural stone and glass. This will have the added advantage of ensuring low maintenance costs.
The decision to install 1,100 metres of Q-railing’s oval-shaped, stainless steel Easy Glass cap rail on staircases throughout the station is a perfect example of this preference for quality. It was also a smart response to the project’s demanding safety and accessibility requirements. In advising the architectural team regarding their choice of product, Q-railing was able to draw on vast experience as a supplier of railing solutions for large public facilities, including stations, airports, shopping malls and sports stadiums.