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MIPIM 2018: Reinventing the city in central Hamburg

HafenCity Hamburg GmbH is presenting the full breadth of innovative urban development at MIPIM, the international real estate fair in Cannes. From March 13–16, 2018, Europe’s biggest inner-city urban development project is a main partner on the Hamburg pavilion – Stand R8.B20 in the Palais des Festivals

MIPIM 2018: HafenCity is presenting the whole new inner-city transformation zone of HafenCity, Billebogen and Grasbrook. (© Stefan Groenveld)

The focus this year is also on the final plots available in HafenCity in addition to information on how the project is progressing. Plus HafenCity is treading new paths for Hamburg with the Elbtower, a sculptural high-rise right next to the Elbe bridges. Together with the new Elbbrücken subway and rapid transit station it will become a new urban hub with an influence reaching into the new urban development areas of Billebogen and Grasbrook.

HafenCity’s development on the ground has reached its eastern point. Specular high-rises, water on three sides and a large central square characterize the densely developed commercial and residential Elbbrücken neighborhood. In the coming three to four years, the remaining plots in HafenCity will be allocated for development. Afterwards the Elbtower, a powerful culmination to HafenCity with a height of 235 metres, will act as a curtain-raiser for the entrée to inner-city Hamburg and the new, adjacent urban development zones. The purchase contract here was signed February 2018. The powerful iconographic design by David Chipperfield Architects incorporates itself respectfully into the new Hanseatic skyline on the banks of the Elbe. Construction could get under way 2021, with opening in 2025 or 2026. In future the Elbtower – privately built and financed by SIGNA Prime Selection AG – will take its place as a matter of course as part of Hamburg’s urban landscape, forming a sculptural urban counterpart to the Elbphilharmonie.

With the new subway and rapid transit stations due to open right next to the Elbtower site in December 2018, HafenCity will already be more closely connected with the whole city center and neighboring areas. This central transport intersection will guarantee easy access and a high development density. It is centrally situated in an approx. 301-hectare zone of inner-city transformation – with a high use density and unique urban economic potential – made up of HafenCity, Billebogen and the new district of Grasbrook.

New city entrée and urban manufacturing

Billebogen gives Hamburg an additional gateway to the inner city to the north of the Elbe and space for innovative entrepreneurial concepts providing about 10,000 jobs plus up to 1,000 homes. It will create a new, integrated entrée to Hamburg’s inner city along a 900-meter axis from Elbbrücken, via the new intermodal rail station to Billbecken harbor basin. A further focal point currently is the new intermodal rail station itself. About 3,000 high-quality jobs will be created here in commercial buildings of a new, vertically organized kind – in an innovation-oriented new urban structure for manufacturing.

Rethinking urban development

Hamburg’s new urban development project Grasbrook – south of the Elbe and opposite HafenCity – will offer space for new offices, commercial buildings, research facilities and laboratories as well as homes. Plans foresee 16,000 jobs, 3,000 homes for about 6,000 residents, plus shopping facilities, a primary school and child daycare centers. About 880,000 sqm of gross floor area above ground will be created on about 65 hectares and there will be 4.9 km of publicly accessible waterfront, combined with attractive green spaces and high-quality public urban areas. A district for innovation with new structures and solutions for the future will emerge here. A focus on innovation will be more important than speed. That holds true for the companies that base themselves here as well as for the district’s mobility, digital and energy concepts.

“The whole new inner-city transformation zone of HafenCity, Billebogen and Grasbrook is an expression of Hamburg’s intelligent urban development strategy. It significantly strengthens the city’s competitiveness within Europe and creates new jobs, and residential and leisure areas for many,” says Professor Jürgen Bruns-Berentelg, Chief Executive of HafenCity Hamburg GmbH. “The different zones of opportunity with their individual focuses give varying answers to important questions about the future of the cities of today and tomorrow.”