The future Vienna Historical Museum is taking shape

Jean-Pierre Barbier, president of the Department of Isère and Thierry Kovacs, mayor of the city of Vienne, presented on Tuesday July 4 the first sketches of the future Viennese History Museum. Atelier Novembre, based in Paris, won the competition unanimously. The museum will be located in the Abbey of Saint-Pierre and the Church of Saint-Georges as well as in the adjoining buildings and grounds.

The 3,500 m² project will integrate the two churches in a glass facade, while the entrance will be through the Church of Saint-Pierre, which will host the exhibitions on Antiquity and the Middle Ages. It is from here that the permanent route through the museum will begin, on a loop of 1,800 m², telling the story of the city of Vienna from antiquity to the modern era. Then will follow, within the Maison Boullu, a temporary exhibition space divided into two parts, with a surface area of ​​more than 400 m². The museum will include a conference room, a shop, a tea room and two educational rooms.

The Viennese History Museum will make it possible to highlight both the importance of the city and the richness of its heritage, bringing together along its route collections currently on display at the Museum of Fine Arts and Archeology, the Museum the cloister of Saint-André-le-Bas, the Archaeological Museum of Saint-Pierre and the Roman Theatre. The objects are loaned for a period of 99 years. However, if the collections kept in the Viennese History Museum remain the property of the City of Vienne, the museum itself will be departmental.

The transfer of the collections from the Archaeological Museum of Saint-Pierre begins this week and will continue until October. Nearly a thousand objects are being cleaned, unsealed and packaged by a team of six restorers under the responsibility of Emmanuel Desroches – conservator-restorer, the team from the mosaic restoration workshop of the Rhône and curatorial team of the Municipal Museums. Restoration work on the buildings will begin in 2024, preceded by archaeological excavations. Construction work will begin in 2025, with an opening still scheduled for summer 2027.

Already owner of eleven museums, the Department of Isère, which wishes to rebalance the museum coverage on the territory, will take care of half of the financing. Vienna granted ownership of the land needed to build the museum for a symbolic euro. The other half will be assumed by the city, the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes Region and the State. In total, the cost of the future Vienna History Museum is estimated at 32.5 million euros.

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