In 1873, Julius Buch began planning of a steel works near Völklingen on the banks of the Saar river. However, this planned work was not completed. In 1881, Carl Röchling began new construction. Two years later the first smelter began operation. The plant closed in 1986.
Today, the Völklinger Hütte is a museum. The Ferrodrom is an interactive science center focusing on the making of iron. Visitors can tour the production areas. In addition, temporary exhibits, on a variety of topics are hosted in the large power halls. In the summer, there are occasional concerts held.