Groundbreaking ceremony for the new Silesian Museum

A long-awaited ceremonial breaking of the ground to formally begin a construction work on the new seat of the Silesian Museum took place on Tuesday. The ceremony gathered representatives of the Marshal Office, the City Hall of Katowice, the Budimex S.A. prime contractor, authors of the project from the Riegler Riewe Architekten studio including Roger Riewe.

The groundbreaking ceremony starts the construction work which to be concluded in 2013. From 7th of July, heavy construction equipment will be bringing to the site. At first, neighbouring buildings have to be secured to prevent its damage when the ground works will be conducting. “Our consortium has 21 months to finish the construction work. On 7th of March 2013 we are obliged to deliver the building to the investor. This is a difficult investment but we have enough time and a good team. We need to prepare a 16-18 meters deep excavation. About twenty thousands of heavy lorries have to remove tons of soil from the excavation site by the end of November this year. By then we would like to finish ground works. By the end of September 2012, we want to conclude a raw state of the building and its elevation” – said Dariusz Blocher, Chairman of Budimex S.A.

A total worth of the contract signed with the consortium of Budimex S.A. and Ferrovial Agroman S.A. amounts PLN 207,8 million. An overall budget of the investment is PLN 324 million, 85% of the qualified costs are to be covered by the European Union funds. “We still got a store of money which is about PLN 40 million and it can be used for some unexpected but necessary changes in the project – we have to remember that this is a damaged, post-industrial site. Also, PLN 10 million is reserved for an exhibition of the Upper Silesia history” – said Leszek Jodliński, Director of the Silesian Museum.

The new Silesian Museum will be the first building in the area of the so called cultural district. Most part of the Museum’s seat will be located under the ground. “There might be a possibility that it will be described as an uncommon, very strange museum’s building. It will make people curious to come not only because of the building, I hope, but also because of the culture programme which will be set here. We think this museum will not take the central stage, it will not exhibit itself as a building but it will be a background for the cultural programme to be run here. This is a big difference to many museums which have been built recently and which are icons, exhibit only the architecture but not the art. This way Katowice can be on the culture map of Europe” – said Roger Riewe, designer of the new Silesian Museum and co-owner of Rigler Riewe Architekten.

Thanks to an on-line camera located at the top of the “Warszawa” mine shaft, the progress of the construction work is possible to be watched at

© Riegler Riewe Architekten; Silesian Museum