Steam Pump House

The water-pumping station on the banks of the Neustadter Havelbucht in Potsdam is one of the most extraordinary industrial buildings in Europe. Its purpose was to accommodate an 81.4 hp steam engine built in Berlin by the young August Borsig (1804-54) that was used to pump water from the River Havel to the fountains in the Sanssouci Park. It was built in 1841-43 at the command of King Frederick William IV, and takes the form of a Turkish mosque, with a minaret as its chimney. It was designed by Friedrich Ludwig Persius (1803-45), a native of Potsdam, who worked on several projects with Karl Friedrich Schinkel (1781-1841), and was appointed court architect on Schinkel’s death. Persius also designed the imposing steam flour mills of Preussische Seehandlung in Zeppelinstrasse, Potsdam, which still stand, as well as flour mills and sugar works in other cities. Water for the fountains at Sanssouci is now provided by electric pumps, but the pumping station is open to the public and there are displays providing information about its architecture and the steam engine that remains in situ.

Steam Pump House
Breite Strasse 28
14467 Potsdam
+49 (0) 331 - 9694248