Hitler's childhood home to turn into police headquarters

After lengthy legal battle, building where Hitler spent the first few months of his life will be turned into a regional police headquarters.

Elad Benari ,

Home where Hitler grew up
Home where Hitler grew up
Reuters

The building where Nazi leader Adolf Hitler spent the first few months of his life will be turned into a regional police headquarters, the Austrian government announced Tuesday, according to Deutsche Welle.

"The future use of the building by police will be an unmistakable signal that this building shall never serve to commemorate National Socialism," Austrian Interior Minister Wolfgang Peschorn said in a statement.

Extremists have been traveling to the town to have their pictures taken in front of the house, news agency dpa reported, citing local witnesses.

Police won't move in right away, as the government is holding an EU-wide architectural competition to redesign the building and outer façade, according to Deutsche Welle.

The Interior Ministry said the winner of the contest is expected to be announced in the first half of 2020.

The government took control of the building, which is located in Braunau am Inn, in December of 2016, after MPs approved an expropriation law specifically aimed at the property.

The move came after years of wrangling with the owner of the home, Gerlinde Pommer, who had been renting the house to the interior ministry since the 1970s and refused to sell it or carry out essential renovation works.

Pommer later campaigned to be compensated in full for the loss of her property.

Earlier this year, a court ordered the Austrian government to pay Pommer 1.5 million euros ($1.7 million).

Hitler was born in an apartment on the top floor of the building in 1889. He lived there for a few months before his parents moved to Passau, Germany.

When the Nazis came to power, they turned the house in Braunau am Inn into a form of fascist center.

Hitler's birth home has attracted neo-Nazis and other extremists for years, with extremists making the trip to Braunau to take a picture in front of the building. Glorifying the Nazi era is a crime in Austria.



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