Die schwimmende Werkstatt schwimmt nimmer.
The Time’s Up workshops used to be many things for the DSSG (the Donaudampfschifffahrtsgesellschaft), including the storage area for all sorts of parts that the ships needed as they plied their trade up and down the Danube. Behind the building were further storage areas for motors and propellors, anchors and suchlike. The part of the building that was used here was the floating workshop (schwimmende Werkstatt). It has the same address as our building does, we used to receive random post addressed to it and visits from debt collectors and the police.
For years the floating workshop was moored around the corner in Becken 3, until the developments there led to it being moved around to the end of one of the peninsulas. It is unclear who owns it; apparently some man from Vienna who misses out on his rental payments. It is unclear what it is like; apparently the rumours that it is asbestos infected are wrong. It lives in an unclear legal space: it cannot leave the harbour because of the lack of clearance to be on the Danube, yet it cannot stay in the harbour either.
Whatever all these things mean, we have watched the schwimmende Werkstatt slowly get tipped up on the rocky shoreline as the water level varies, watched as moped riders climb aboard to break windows, watched as the birch tree on one end of the vessel slowly grows. Most visitors wonder what it is and imagine it would be a great club, a great working space, a great theater. We wondered whether it would get squatted, burn, move elsewhere or sink.
Now we know.