For two decades, visitors to the Transport Center of the DeutschesMuseum have delved into everything related to movement on wheels, rolls, tracks, and skates. On September 10th, the museum commemorates this milestone as part of the Open Monument Day with a grand event at Theresienhöhe. From 9 am to 5 pm, a flurry of activities awaits, including special guided tours, vintage car and Zündapp meetings, guided tours of the transparent restoration workshop, and more. The best part? Entrance is free!
More Space for Cars, Trains, Bikes, and Modern Exhibition Concepts
A complete branch dedicated solely to land transportation - that's the Transport Center's innovation, offering more room for cars, trains, and two-wheelers alongside a contemporary display approach. Two decades ago, as Patentmotorwagen and Puffing Billy & Co. rolled from the museum island to Theresienhöhe under the watchful eyes of 30,000 Munich residents, not everyone was wholeheartedly enthusiastic. "Some found it challenging that such significant crowd-pullers were being moved from the main museum building," recounts Bettina Gundler, Head of the Transport Center. "Others harbored reservations about the new concept." This new approach broke from the tradition of strictly segregating various vehicle types and aimed for a more realistic representation across three major thematic exhibitions. "Our intention was to connect the technology with its context and show how these vehicles actually serve us. We wanted to make visible our mobility needs and the challenges they sometimes present," says Bettina Gundler.
Since then, the skeptics have been silenced by the Transport Center's resounding success. With over two million visitors since the opening of its first hall at the Bavariapark branch, the center's popularity continues to surge. Currently, the Transport Center is welcoming more guests than ever before in its history, with over 110,000 already this year. "The significant automobiles and trains are still the stars," says Bettina Gundler, "but our thematic arrangement and the multitude of special exhibitions have been incredibly well-received by visitors, as surveys have shown."
Moreover, the Transport Center has established itself within the city as a forum for discussions on mobility-related topics. Regular lectures and panel discussions are held in collaboration with partners like Green City e. V. and the TU München, along with numerous other events where visitors are encouraged to engage in conversations about new transportation concepts and technologies. "Our museum serves as a neutral space for discourse on transportation, often backed by historical context provided in our exhibits," explains director Bettina Gundler.
Clearly, there's ample reason to celebrate. On September 10th, coinciding with this year's Open Monument Day, everyone is invited to join the festivities. The anniversary event promises a wealth of sights and experiences both within and around the historically preserved halls. From vintage car and Zündapp meetings at Schneckenplatz, Vespa acrobatics, and special guided tours to explorations of the transparent restoration workshop, riding a horse tram, engaging in movement games, or trying out unconventional bicycles, there's something for everyone. A food truck will also be available for refreshments. And remember, admission is free.
Original press release here in German
Image Copyright, Deutsches Museum