The three-story building of Braunau am Inn, near the German border, is expected to undergo a major renovation that authorities hope to prevent it from becoming a pilgrimage site for Nazi sympathizers.
Hitler was born in an apartment in the building on April 20, 1889, since his father worked as a customs officer in the city. The family left Braunau am Inn, which was then part of Austria-Hungary, when Hitler was three years old.
The building in which Adolf Hitler was born, pictured in 2015. Credit: Joe Klamar / AFP / Getty Images
According to a government press release, Interior Minister Karl Nehammer told Tuesday’s press conference that the city had become “the antithesis of everything (Hitler) represented”.
Debate in progress
The fate of the building has long been a controversial issue in the city, where many wish to demolish Hitler’s painful short-time reminder there.
Austrian interior minister Karl Nehammer presents the plan chosen for the architectural redesign of Hitler’s birthplace Credit: JOE KLAMAR / AFP / AFP via Getty Images
For decades, the controversial building belonged to Gerlinde Pommer, whose family owned the property before Hitler was born. The Austrian Ministry of the Interior started renting the site from her in 1972, presenting it to various charities. But the building was left empty by the last occupant, a disabled center, vacated in 2011.
Legal disputes over kidnapping and compensation followed, during which plans to demolish the building were shelved.
The exterior of the building shown in digital models by the Austrian architecture studio Marte.Marte, which won a competition to renovate the site. Credit: Marte.Marte
After securing the site, the Austrian government continued to fear that it would attract neo-Nazis and others in keeping with Hitler’s ideology. Announcing the decision to turn it into a police station last year, the then Austrian Interior Minister Wolfgang Peschorn said that “future use of the house by the police will be an unmistakable sign that this building will never serve to commemorate National Socialism. . “
The renovations of the building are expected to be completed in early 2023 and their cost is approximately 5 million euros (5.6 million dollars).
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