History of the Maag-Areal

From 1913 to 1991, the Tonhalle Orchestra Zurich’s temporary home was the Maag gearwheel factory. Its founder, Max Maag (1883–1960), had solved the problem of wear in gearwheels; the gearwheels and machine tools he invented and produced were sold all over the world. Maag left the company in 1926.

Alte Maag-Halle (Foto: Marcela Bradler)

However, gearwheels, gearing mechanisms and pumps were manufactured in the factory beside the Hardbrücke bridge until the 1990s. The offices and workshops, which were increasingly no longer needed, were gradually rented out to a wide variety of different companies.

The replacement of the «Maag Zahnräder» neon sign by the «maag areal» logo in 1994 symbolised the complex’s new purpose as a location for trade, services and the arts. An urban planning concept for the redevelopment of the site presented in the year 2000 has gradually been implemented.