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Transparent Factory in Dresden, Germany

Transparent Factory is the English name of an automobile production plant owned by German carmaker Volkswagen and opened in 2002. The original German name is Gläserne Manufaktur (factory made of glass, literally vitreous manufactory). Both the German and English names are a word play on the double meaning of transparent and glassy, referring to both optical transparency and transparency of the production process.

The main purpose of the factory is the assembly of Volkswagen's luxury sedan, the Phaeton. Spare capacity was also used to construct Bentley Continental Flying Spurs until 2006, when all work was transferred to Bentley's Crewe plant.

The Transparent Factory is situated in the city center of Dresden, the 800-year-old German baroque city known for its arts and craftsmanship. It stands at the former location of the convention center. The factory's walls are made almost completely of glass. Its floors are covered entirely in Canadian maple. Its visitor-friendly layout was designed to accommodate up to 250 tourists per day. There are no smokestacks, no loud noises, and no toxic byproducts.


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Taken on August 12, 2008