Friday, 06. December 2013 - 14:12
05. 06. 12. - 16:00
Austrian police are investigating after one of Vienna city landmarks built by the architect Friedensreich Hundertwasser was at the centre of a corruption scandal in which expansion work was carried out by firms accused of paying kickbacks.
Austrian born Hundertwassser believed that even conventional buildings that every city needed to have could be made beautiful and he devoted his efforts in attempting to make everyday structures such as petrol stations, public toilets and council houses into architectural jewels.
One of his projects included the huge Vienna Fernwarme - a huge complex that is up water and pumps it to Council owned estates and businesses saving money with the centralised burning process.
In his typical style includes spectacular coloured cooling towers and numerous windows and mirrors with plants where possible and of course uneven floors to remind people of the natural world in which they live in.
But the corruption scandal has centred around work to add new water pipes from the Fernwarme to include new customers who would get their hot water centrally. According to allegations from one of the men involved firm went bankrupt and was involved in paint backs to staff – commissions for the building work were fastly overpriced and accepted only because of the bribes.
According to a report in the magazine profil there are 26 people involved including 15 Fernwarme staff who are under investigation by prosecutors accused of not following the tender rules and wrongly handing out tenders.
The £5 million down is reported to have gone on for years with a part of the increased cost of the work being paid back to the Fernwarme managers.
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