Swiss can’t make Tonhalle run on time

Reopening Zurich’s Tonhalle concert hall has been pushed back by a further six months to March 2021 – and at an addditional cost of about eight million US dollars.

The latest excuse? ‘Optimization measures’.

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  • In another are, small beer compared to the Berlin airport fiasco. Ten years late nearly, if it does open next year, and at least 3-fold over budget.

  • All I can remember about this place in its earlier state was the intolerably cramped and uncomfortable seating, and an equally overcrowded lobby area. I experienced a Prokofiev piano concerto while in a semi-foetal position.

  • The Tonhalle Zurich is together with the Laeiszhalle Hamburg and the Musikverein in Vienna the acoustical glory of European “Shoebox”-concert halls.

  • The Swiss are notoriously careless about organisation, they want to be precise with things but don’t think it worhtwhile to live up to their reputation. When in Bern I once saw a sign on the window of a shop closed for refurbishment: ‘Wir wissen nicht wen wir oeffnen werden aber es wird puenktlich sein.’

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