With 18,000 employees, the Buna plant was one of the five largest industrial combines in the GDR. The "House of Friendship" culture house was a state concept developed at the time (and largely unknown today) to introduce the working masses to culture. The clubhouse was one of the most traditional cultural houses and a memorable cultural experiment in the GDR.
The founder of the project was the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics; the Soviet officers of the Halle district decided to build a cultural house for the employees of the Buna Works.
Designed under Soviet supervision by the factory architects Hauser and Reinhardt, a representative building of impressive dimensions was erected in the style of so-called Socialist Classicism in 1952 and 1953 and opened on October 11, 1953. The building, which is based on classical models, is characterized by clear structuring and cubic forms.
It was given the name "X50" because all the buildings and streets of the chemical complex were arranged according to a coordinate system of letters and numbers.
In the years following the opening, the Kulturhaus was expanded with additional outbuildings, including a restaurant for 200 people, and other functional rooms.
In 1958, the building had over 100 rooms for various festivities and recreational activities. The building included a theater hall with over 750 seats and a concert hall with 250 seats. The stage technology was among the most modern in the GDR.
After its closure in 1998, various plans were developed for the use of the building, but none of them were implemented, so that the deterioration of the building continues.
A conversion of the Buna clubhouse into a large disco failed because the state turned off the money tap. A fraud trial over the expansion ensued.
Visited: November 28, 2019
Location: Undisclosed, Germany