Altenrhein, Alter Rhein and Hundertwasser
28 August 2023
Altenrhein is a border village with Austria in the municipality of Thal in the canton of St. Gallen. Altenrhein lies at the end of a headland between arms of the (Alter Rhein) old Rhine delta.
In 983 the village was mentioned as Rinisgemünde, in 1402 as zum vornchtigen Rhin. Since the 17th century, the village has been referred to as Altenrhein.
In 983, the Bishop of Constance donated Altenrhein to the Petershausen Monastery in Constance. In the late Middle Ages, a settlement of the Abbey of St. Gall gradually developed.
Der Alte Rhein (the Old Rhine)
In addition to cultivating fields and pastures, the population lived mainly from the Rhine and Lake Constance. Since 1900, the course of the Rhine near Altenrhein has been fed only by the Rhine Valley inland canal and has become deserted. The riparian and reed landscape was placed under protection in 1973.
In 1803 (foundation of the Canton of St. Gallen) Altenrhein became part of the political municipality of Thal. Between 1926 and 1927, the airfield and the Dornier Aircraft Works Altenrhein were built and later transformed into the Flug- und Fahrzeugwerke Altenrhein (FFA) in 1949.
Today, the village is known for the St. Gallen-Altenrhein airfield, the (former) Flug- und Fahrzeugwerke Altenrhein, the Altenrhein Aviation Museum, and the Hundertwasser architectural project (Die Markthalle-Altenrhein) on Lake Constance. Altenrhein is also a water sports, tourism and local recreation area.
(Source and further information: Bodensee Kultur.info)
The Hundertwasser Projekt (Die Markthalle Altenrhein)
Like other more than 30 buildings in Europe and Japan, the project is an example of the architectural concepts of the artist Friedensreich Hundertwasser (1928-2000).