New Town Hall


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New Town Hall


New Town Hall

Until 1894 the northern side of the Alter Markt (Old Market) was dominated by the high-rise building of the Hauptwache (main guardhouse). In 1890 the City Council bought it back from the tax authorities, however the councillors did not succeed in finding enough tenants to keep and maintain the building. In the end, there was no other solution than to knock down the building in order to undertake new urban plans designed to change this strategic place in the heart of the city.

In order to begin construction of a new commercial building which was badly needed, the City Council also bought buildings No. 4 and 6 adjacent to the Hauptwache building. In 1903, a decision on the new construction was adopted. The councillors gave their approval to provide 650,000 German marks from the municipal savings bank funds. Therefore, the construction of the new building of the savings bank began in 1904. Already from the beginning it had been planned to include the municipal archives and the municipal library in the building in order to serve the community. Building inspector Wilhelm Berner was the person who signed all architectural drawings and therefore he was primarily responsible for the construction. The four floor building is crowned by a huge garret roof. The centre of the facade is a splendid example of a risalit gable where the city’s coat of arms can be admired. In 1907, the new building at Hauptwacheplatz became occupied. Since then, it sits companionably across from the Otto von Guericke monument designed by Karl Friedrich Echtermeyer which was also inaugurated in 1907.

When the municipal library as well as the archives again moved out in 1934, the ownership of the commercial building since 1923 was transferred to the Mitteldeutsche Landesbank and the Sparkassen- und Giroverband for the provinces of Saxony, Thuringia and Anhalt. The seat of the communal giro centre still remained here. A look at the pictures of the Alter Markt in 1945 reveals the true extent of destruction and damage to the city. The market place was in ruins with an exception of the Guericke monument and the bank building. After the destruction of the historical Town Hall in 1945, the building in neo-Baroque style (erected from 1691-1698) at the eastern side of the Alter Markt became the new seat of the administrative office and remained so even after the old Town Hall was reconstructed.

As early as 1991, while all the administrative work was being carried out, the interior of the building at Bei der Hauptwache 4 was party renovated. At the end of the 90s, the façade was on the verge of collapse. In a final step, the works on the interior of the building as well as the renovation of the neo-Baroque sandstone facade were completed within only one year. 100 years after construction of the commercial building began, it has now become the so-called "New Town Hall" in all its splendour where the offices of the City Council and the Mayor are located until the renovation work on the Old Town Hall is completed. However, the New Town Hall will still continue to be a centre of communal administration thereafter.


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