Berger + Parkkinen transforms three vacant Viennese post-war buildings into a glassblower’s studio
Wolfgang Thaler

Berger + Parkkinen transforms three vacant Viennese post-war buildings into a glassblower’s studio

1 Dec 2023  •  News  •  By Gerard McGuickin

Austrian-Finnish architecture firm Berger + Parkkinen has completed the transformation of an unused site in Währing, the 18th district of Vienna, into a glassblower’s studio. Emphasizing sustainable construction, the project preserved the site’s three existing buildings while introducing a new functionality.

photo_credit Wolfgang Thaler
Wolfgang Thaler

Designed as the workshop, showroom, and home of glassblower Robert Comploj, Berger + Parkkinen adapted the three vacant buildings with a focus on contemporary comfort and energy efficiency. The architectural firm is recognized for its thoughtful approach to sustainable construction, as demonstrated in the 2022 Wientalterrassen residential complex in Vienna, a project that was awarded klimaaktiv Gold (klimaaktiv is the Austrian climate protection initiative).

photo_credit Wolfgang Thaler
Wolfgang Thaler

The compact site in Vienna-Währing is surrounded by post-war apartments. Berger + Parkkinen designated its three pre-existing houses, also from the post-war era, as House A, House B, and House C.

photo_credit Wolfgang Thaler
Wolfgang Thaler
photo_credit Berger + Parkkinen
Berger + Parkkinen
photo_credit Berger + Parkkinen
Berger + Parkkinen

House A is a hall with a reinforced concrete frame. Positioned on three sides along the property’s boundary, it is flooded with natural daylight via six skylights. House A is the workshop of Studio Comploj. On the busy interior, a huge furnace embodies the skillful craft of glassblowing. The adjacent House B, with a ground floor built from brick, a wooden ceiling, and timber truss construction, is connected to the eastern property boundary by an extension with a shed roof. House B is used by Studio Comploj as an office and showroom.

photo_credit Wolfgang Thaler
Wolfgang Thaler
photo_credit Wolfgang Thaler
Wolfgang Thaler
photo_credit Wolfgang Thaler
Wolfgang Thaler
photo_credit Wolfgang Thaler
Wolfgang Thaler

A glass door partition divides House A and House B, offering visitors a glimpse into the glassblower’s studio.

photo_credit Wolfgang Thaler
Wolfgang Thaler

House C was a single-story flat-roofed building, originally used as an office. Berger + Parkkinen reconfigured the house as a private residence, adding a new gable roof. The construction is in wood and the building is clad with the Prefalz aluminum strip system. Applied to both the roof and facade, the finish is clean and contemporary. 

In the garden, existing trees were preserved and the landscaping was enhanced with additional greenery.

photo_credit Wolfgang Thaler
Wolfgang Thaler
photo_credit Wolfgang Thaler
Wolfgang Thaler

"This charming jewel in Vienna-Währing highlights that sustainable construction is not solely dependent on scale but can be realized and made affordable based on specific requirements,” says Berger + Parkkinen.

House A, B, and C sections:

photo_credit Berger + Parkkinen
Berger + Parkkinen
photo_credit Berger + Parkkinen
Berger + Parkkinen
photo_credit Berger + Parkkinen
Berger + Parkkinen