Berlin Travel Tip:
Topography of Terror
Topography of Terror
The Topography of Terror (German: Topographie des Terrors) is an outdoor museum in Berlin, the capital of Germany. It is located in Niederkirchnerstrasse, formerly Prinz-Albrecht-Strasse, on the site of buildings which during the Nazi regime from 1933 to 1945 were the headquarters of the Gestapo and the SS, the principal instruments of repression during the Nazi era.
The buildings that housed the Gestapo and SS headquarters were largely destroyed by Allied bombing during early 1945 and the ruins demolished after the war. The boundary between the American and Soviet zones of occupation in Berlin ran along the Prinz-Albrecht-Strasse, so the street soon became a fortified boundary, and the Berlin Wall ran along the south side of the street, renamed Niederkirchnerstrasse, from 1961 to 1989. The wall here was never demolished. Indeed the section adjacent to the Topography of Terror site is the longest extant segment of the outer wall (the longer East Side Gallery section in Friedrichshain being actually part of the inner wall not visible from West Berlin).
The first exhibitions of the site took place in 1987, as part of Berlin's 750th anniversary. The cellar of the Gestapo headquarters, where many political prisoners were tortured and executed, were found and excavated. The site was then turned into a memorial and museum, in the open air but protected from the elements by a canopy, detailing the history of repression under the Nazis. The excavation took place in cooperation with East German researchers, and a joint exhibition was shown both at the site and in East Germany in 1989.
In 1992, two years after German reunification, a foundation was established to take care of the site, and the following year, it initiated an architectural competition to design a permanent museum. A design by architect Peter Zumthor was chosen. However, construction was stopped due to funding problems after the concrete core of the structure had been built. This stood on the site for nearly a decade until it was finally demolished in 2004 and a new building begun.
Tags: Topography of Terror, Topographie des Terrors, museum
Location of Topography of Terror
Have a question about Topography of Terror? Ask a local resident for special Topography of Terror insider tips ...
In case you have a specific question for Topography of Terror or would like a Topography of Terror insider tip from one of our local property owners and Topography of Terror experts. Simply add your question and enter your email address. You will typically receive responses from us soon, in many cases within less than 24 hours! Please note: We do not share your email address with with anyone. Responses will solely be sent from us.
More Berlin Travel Tips
Berlin is the capital city of Germany, and with a population of 3.4 million within its city limits, it is the country's largest city. It is the second most populous city and the eighth most populous urban area in the European Union. Berlin is a major…
Related: Berlin travel guide
Where to stay in Berlin?
We have a collection of charming and inviting vacation rentals in Berlin.
Ask a Local for special travel insider tips!
We make it easy for you to post your travel questions and get them answered by local residents and our property owners in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. This way you get unqiue travel tips, personalized to your needs. Just type in your destination in the search box and go to your desired destination guide. From there look for the "Ask a Local" box, type in your question and submit. Typically you'll get 2-3 responses within less than 24 hours.
Download free eBook: 10 Tips on how to Live Like a German during your Germany Vacation!
Register for our free monthly Germany travel newsletter and download as a gift this valuable eBook: "10 Tips on how to Live Like a German during your Germany Vacation" - written by Bettina Kraft, owner of the Live Like a German site.
[ + ] More Details