1929 – 1931
Architects: Eugen Kastner, Fritz Waage
Humboldtgasse 1–5, Vienna, Austria
The substation Favoriten was built between 1929 and 1931 according to plans by architects Eugen Kastner and Fritz Waage.
The building, which was erected on a triangular site that was rather unfavorable for the purpose, is characterized by a purely functional design, namely the accommodation of large transformers.
A circumferential one-story plinth zone forms the base, above which five stories rise.
Square and round windows divide the smooth plaster facade, which is terminated at the top by an attic storey.
Like the prow of a steamship, the base structure thrusts itself into the street intersection, and the stair tower rises above it like a command bridge.
The monumental effect of the building is explained by the succession of massive rectangular and circular structures.
The station manager’s office was constructed as a command bridge projecting above the structure, as was common on ocean liners. The circular windows are also reminiscent of ship designs.
In the 1920s, the area around the property in Favoriten was a barracks village. It was demolished in order to erect the imposing substation.
The design of the functional building, which is unusual for Vienna, possibly goes back to Soviet Architecture.
The Favoriten substation is one of the oldest substations of Wiener Netze GmbH, which is still in operation after the renewal of the technical equipment.
Its purpose is to bring the applied current to a lower voltage. The electricity is then fed into the distribution networks, from where it reaches households, for example.
Until the turn of the millennium, there was also a control station here from which the entire southern power grid, up to just before Wiener Neustadt, was controlled.
Thanks to remote operation, the Viennese substations hardly need any personnel, which is why the interior of the substation is mostly deserted today and is often used as a movie location for shooting.
Breathtaking, brutally functional. A true Goliath of purist mechanical logic. stunning!