Saturday, December 5, 2015
Paul Bonatz (6 December 1877 – 20 December 1956) was a German architect, member of the Stuttgart School and professor at the technical university in that city during part of World War II and from 1954 until his death.
After the Nazis came to power he became architectural expert and advisor to Fritz Todt, the Nazi general inspector for German road building, and in this position built major bridges for the new Reichsautobahn system, but Bonatz was not a member of the Nazi party himself.
Bridge Köln-Rodenkirchen, 1939-41
The government tried to make good use of Bonatz's talents and name, but found him politically unreliable. Because of his vocal opinions, Bonatz was investigated twice by the police, who accused him of aiding Jews and being openly critical of Hitler. Although he won the competition to execute the gigantic glass dome for the new main station in Munich, he soon became disenchanted with Hitler's requiring the dome and critical of the entire design. This led him to leave Germany for Turkey in 1943.
Stuttgart Main Station, 1911-27
He returned to Germany in 1954 to participate in the reconstruction of Stuttgart and Düsseldorf. He was a professor at the University of Stuttgart from 1954 until his death in 1956.