Stadtwaage arts centre
Splendid Renaissance exterior. Built in 1586/88 by Lüder von Bentheim, rebuilt after the war. Home to the Günter Grass foundation and German Philharmonic Chamber Orchestra.
The former municipal weigh house (Stadtwaage) dating from 1587 was destroyed on 6 October 1944 in one of the many wartime air raids on Bremen. The building, designed by Lüder von Bentheim, was gutted by fire, the upper part of its ornate gable collapsed and the structure across the back was completely destroyed – all that remained was a U-shaped ruin.
There followed years of arguments about what to do with the building, which is of both architectural and historical significance. They finally came to an end in 1959, when the Sparkasse Bremen savings bank decided – as conservationist Rudolf Stein puts it – to mount "a very last minute rescue" and preserved the weigh house for the people of Bremen.
The bank covered all of the substantial costs of restoring the old weigh house as a monument to Bremen's merchant spirit.
Since the year 2000, the Stadtwaage arts centre has been home to the German Philharmonic Chamber Orchestra of Bremen.