EU directive demands ESC 2014 venue to be returned to its original form

Stage being torn down

The stage in Copenhagen is being torn down | Picture: Niels Ahlmann Olesen

The old shipyard in Copenhagen was turned into a proper Eurovision venue for this year’s contest. Right after Conchita Wurst had sung her winning entry again, B&W Hallerne became a construction site again – this time to turn it into its original form.

Danish newspaper BT writes on its website that this is because of an EU directive which states that public funds should not be used to renovate privately owned facilities, like B&H Hallerne in this case. Therefore the newly asphalted roads will be demolished and the venue’s floor must be removed. It may also be that the network cables which were built to guarantee internet access during Eurovision will be dug up.

The original budget of 50 million DKK (~€6,5 million) was exceeded by additional 20 million (~€2,5 million) as the construction works costed more than expected. Large pillars had to be removed inside the halls and now they must be built back.

While the demolition works have already started in B&W Hallerne, several Copenhagen politics hope to be able to find private investors to come in rescue. This way the EU directive could be bypassed and B&W Hallerne could remain in its newly renovated form.

– It has always been recognized that this was only a temporary venue because of the EU directives. But we think it’s positive if politicians are willing to find a solution to avoid expensive demolition works, Emil Spangenberg comments from the Copenhagen tourism bureau Wonderful Copenhagen.