German President Horst Köhler and Berlin Mayor Klaus Wowereit will open the memorial centre and museum on Thursday afternoon. Wowereit has described the centre as a “cornerstone of Berlin’s culture of remembrance.”
The Nazi security headquarters were used to torture and murder political dissidents and prisoners of war during World War II. Key elements of the Holocaust were also planned there.
The original exhibition was put up in 1987 as part of the celebration of Berlin’s 750th birthday.
But the snowballing cost of the new centre meant long delays. The final building, which documents in great detail the horrors perpetrated by the SS and Gestapo, has cost €37 million.