Dictator highway needs a 30 million facelift

A panorama road built by the Third Reich during World War II should be restored with 30 million Euros of public cash, historic monument officials in Austria are demanding.

The 10 mile Hohenstrasse – or Vienna High Road – was hand built from blocks of granite over six years as a work creation programme for jobless Austrians.

They were banned from using machines and only given primitive tools to make sure the project lasted as long as possible.

Now parts of it are so worn out, local council road officials want to tarmac over them.

But cultural experts say the road should returned to its Nazi-era glory despite its history – with hand placed granite blocks.

Austria’s monument protection spokesman Richard Wittasek-Diekmann said: “As far as we are concerned this road is protected in its entirety and should be restored properly.”

The Hohenstrasse travels across a 10 mile stretch through wooded hills and vineyards on the outskirts of Vienna – offering spectacular views of the city and the River Danube.

The project had long been discussed but was finally implemented by Austrian dictator Engelbert Dollfuss who shut down parliament in 1933 – and then banned the Socialist movement in February 1934.

Dollfuss was assassinated by Nazi agents the same year although his regime was maintained until Adolf Hitler’s annexing of Austria in 1938.

The Nazis believed the project which offered jobs to 600 workers a day fitted perfectly with their strategy of full employment and it was continued until it was completed.