On the Conceptuality of a Restrained Adaptation

architect Hans Gangoly
project The Revitalisation of the Municipal Mill, Graz, Austria
written by Vera Grimmer


One of the themes behind the award-winning project of the revitalisation of the Graz mill was to pay tribute to the carpenter’s work which is of great historical value. Architect Gangoly received the “Piranesi Award” for the project and the investor received an accolade from the Central Association of Austrian Architects. The mill’s storehouse, built in the second half of the 19th century, was used until 1928, after which it was employed for several purposes. In 1995 the building was declared a monument under state protection, not only because of the façade with its neo-Renaissance ornamentation, but primarily because of its interior post and beam construction. The entire height of the building houses a system of rounded posts with capitals following the Doric principle which carry the primary and secondary beams. And it is this construction that spans the mill’s 27-metre depth. The interior construction is not only interesting as a historical documentation of wooden constructions, but, similar to the façade design with its pilasters, pylons and frame profiles, it also attempts to represent a successful company from the period of its foundation. The motives behind the renovation of the mill by the Office for Monument Protection of the City of Graz were constructional, historical, social and cultural.