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Facts & Figures

HafenCity Project

HafenCity development: facts and figures

HafenCity Hamburg is setting new standards – at least in Europe – in successful integrated urban development that takes local requirements and high expectations of urbanity and sustainability equally into consideration. On an area of 157 ha, a lively city is taking shape, a new downtown on the waterfront with a fine-grained blend of workplaces and residential uses, education, culture and leisure, tourism and retail facilities.

HafenCity is being developed from west to east and from north to south. In the meantime, HafenCity has become established as a popular place to live and work. (© HafenCity Hamburg GmbH)

Status: February 2019

Stages of development in HafenCity

  • 1997: Announcement of HafenCity project
  • 1999: Masterplan competition: winner KeesChristiaanse / ASTOC
  • 2000: Masterplan agreed by Senate2001: Above-ground construction begins (SAP, now KLU / MSH)
  • 2003: Completion of first building, building starts on first neighborhood (Am Sandtorkai / Dalmannkai)
  • 2005: First residents move in
  • 2009: Construction of first neighborhood completed
  • 2010: Revision of Masterplan for eastern HafenCity
  • 2012: U4 subway to HafenCity opens
  • 2014: Opening of HafenCity University (HCU) in HafenCity
  • 2017: Opening of Elbphilharmonie concert hall
  • 2017: Construction begins in southern Überseequartier
  • 2018: Elbbrücken subway station opens
  • 2019: Elbbrücken rapid transit station goes into service
  • 2021/22: Construction of Elbtower begins
  • 2022: Opening of Überseequartier and new cruise ship terminal
  • 2025–2030: Projected completion of HafenCity (apart from a few buildings)

Basic data

  • Overall area: 157 ha of former port and industrial land
  • Land area: 127 ha
  • Expansion of Hamburg City area by 40% 
  • 10.5 km dockside promenade/3.1 km Elbe embankment
  • Proportion of public open spaces and publicly accessible private open spaces: 38%
  • over 7,500 homes (approx. 1,500–2,000 subsidized) for approx. 15,000 residents
  • Building density: 3.7–6.1 floor space index (FSI)
  • Residential density: 118 / ha (land area)
  • Employee density: 354 / ha (land area)
  • 68 projects completed; 71 projects under construction or planned
  • Investment volume: private investment – around € 10 billion; public investment – € 3 billion, mostly financed from special assets fund sales of plots in HafenCity
  • General planning basis:
    – Masterplan 2000
    – Masterplan revision for eastern HafenCity 2010
  • Deals through sale of land or exclusive options have been closed on around 1.8 million m² GFA

Usage Pattern

Residential uses
(indicative data)

  • approx. 3,000 residential units completed
  • price spectrum:
    – subsidized living: € 6.50 / m² (first tier subsidy) and € 8.60 / m² (second tier)
    – housing cooperative rentals: € 9.50–14 / m²
    – controlled price housing: € 11.50-13 / m²
    – rental market: € 12–20 / m²
    – privately owned homes:
        - from approx. € 3,500-4,000 / m² (joint building ventures)
        - over € 4,000–6,000 / m² (developer-managed concepts)
        - up to € 6,000–10,000 / m² (luxury concepts); individual cases e.g. penthouses over
          € 10,000 / m²
  • Current number of residents: approx. 4,000
  • increasing higher proportion of households with children
    (HafenCity: 23.8 %; Hamburg average: 17.8%)

Office and services uses

  • more than 730 companies to date including approx. 40 larger firms
  • creation of up to 45,000 jobs (of which 35,000 office jobs)
  • current jobs: approx. 14,000

Selected cultural institutions

  • Elbphilharmonie Concert Hall (opened 2017)
  • International Maritime Museum Hamburg (private, opened 2008)
  • Prototyp automobile museum (private, opened 2008)
  • Oberhafen (creative quarter in former railroad sheds, some in use, some being modernized)
  • denk.mal Hannoverscher Bahnhof documentation center (deportation exhibition, opens 2021/21)

Education facilities

  • HCU HafenCity University (since 2014)
  • KLU Kühne Logistics University (since 2010)
  • MSH Medical School Hamburg (since 2010)
  • International School of Management (branch; since 2010)
  • Frankfurt School of Finance and Management (branch; since 2011)
  • HafenCity school campus: educational establishment with four Gymnasium secondary streams and three community school streams incl. three-court sports hall, poss. added residential (Am Lohsepark building opens 2022/23; operations begin at Baakenhafen 2021)
  • Baakenhafen learning and family center: four-stream primary and children's day-care incl. sports hall, training pool, education services (opens 2020)
  • Katharinen school (primary; since 2009)
  • six children’s day-care centers operational (of which one temporary), two more under construction or planned (total more than 1,000 spaces)

Special projects
(not including cultural projects)

  • Traditional Ship Harbor in Sandtorhafen harbor basin: 5,800 sqm floating square on pontoons (since 2008)
  • Ecumenical Forum (since 2012)
  • Elbe Arcades (since 2013)
  • denk.mal Hanover railroad station (memorial with three elements in and at Lohsepark, step-by-step completion since 2016)
  • Lohsepark (since 2016)
  • 1.6 ha Baakenpark recreational island (completion 2018)
  • Überseequartier: highly integrated mixed-use quarter (retail, residential, hotel, entertainment, offices, cruise ship terminal, gastronomy), 410,000 m2 GFA, 6,100 jobs (completion 2022)
  • Elbtower: Hamburg's tallest permanently used building (approx. 240 m, 105,000 m² GFA, offices, hotel, entertainment; construction starts 2021/22)

Press Contact

Direct press requests to HafenCity Hamburg GmbH:


Your contacts:

Susanne Bühler
Head of Communications
Phone: +49 (0)40 37 47 26 - 14

André Stark
Press Relations Marketing
Tel. (040) 37 47 26 - 21

Henrike Thomsen
Press Relations Marketing Billebogen
Tel. (0)40 37 47 26-20

Or use our contact form:


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HafenCity at the real estate show EXPO REAL in Munich

Once again HafenCity is presenting itself at the largest B2B trade fair for commercial real estate in Europe, the EXPO REAL in Munich. Around 1,700 exhibitors from more than 30 different countries and around 37,000 visitors take part with the aim to network, gain market orientation and valuable business contacts. A large stand will also represent other urban development projects in the City of Hamburg.

Urban and green: HafenCity Hamburg in the east

In mid-June the air around Magdeburger Hafen in central HafenCity was no longer only filled with construction noise, but with the sound of bells: the Brücke ecumenical forum, a project launched jointly by 19 Christian churches, was celebrating its in-auguration. The peals of bells from the modern chapel were a signal showing how far HafenCity has developed and how filled with life it has become.

This new downtown project will eventually increase the area of Hamburg’s core by 40 percent. A variety of mixed neighborhoods taking shape on a site beside the River Elbe previously occupied by port and industrial uses will provide around 6,000 living spaces and 45,000 jobs (in retail and gastronomy, in small and medium sized companies, as well as in the arts and academia). The combination of urban density with generous open spaces, sustainable concepts for mobility and buildings add up to what is a ground-breaking, internationally recognized, urban development project.

Alongside new-build volume amounting to around 2.3m² gross floor area (GFA), HafenCity will also have some 26 hectares of public parkland, squares and promenades. So far realized are 184,000m² GFA for living, 324,000m² for offices, retail and gastronomy, as well as 20,000m² for special uses (cultural, academic, hotel). Still under construction or in preparation for it are another 200,000m² GFA for homes, 213,000m² GFA for offices, retail and gastronomy, and 80,000m² GFA for special uses (including the Elbphilharmonie concert hall).

Almost all of western HafenCity, with the Elbphilharmonie on its promontory (ready in 2015), has been realized. Some sites in Am Strandkai neighborhood are still awaiting development. In southern Überseequartier the start of construction of the cruise ship terminal and two striking office towers on the Elbe embankment has been brought forward to the second half of 2013. The Überseequartier joint venture is in the process of being restructured. The opening of the new U4 subway line in late fall of 2012 will perfect transport connections to western and central HafenCity.

In the meantime, central HafenCity is quickly advancing along Magdeburger Hafen and Shanghaiallee. The Elbarkaden and HeimatHafen building ensemble blends arcaded spaces and waterside promenades with a 180m long building with a range of uses and the highest standards of sustainability. In 2013 the German headquarters of Greenpeace, the designxport design center and 90 living spaces will be ready for occupation. In the same year, HafenCity University’s building on the bank of the Elbe will be completed, whilst the creation of Lohsepark, HafenCity’s four-hectare ‘Central Park’, will get under way.

And realization of eastern HafenCity is also quickly coming closer. The initial focus here will be on the sustainable neighborhood of Baakenhafen with its residential and leisure uses. In future it will stretch the length of two dock promontories between Baakenhafen and the Elbe River, offering 1,800 homes as well as jobs for 4,600 people. This quarter remains true to the urban character of HafenCity. But it is also eastern HafenCity’s green core and takes maximum advantage of its spectacular double-waterfront, providing outstanding public spaces – notably a 1.5 hectare artificial island for play and leisure in Baakenhafen harbor basin itself, as well as a 900m green promenade along the banks of the Elbe.

In addition to the adventure island and its “Tower of Talkers” art work by the internationally renowned artist Thomas Schütte, Baakenhafen neighborhood will also be the location of other sights and attractions. An international competition is being launched in summer 2012 for the HafenCity Wasserhäuser – water houses – six sustainably built residential towers to be erected in Baakenhafen itself. Prominent international architects’ offices are being invited to submit designs for them. Tenders for the sites will follow according to the result of the architectural competition. Calls for tender for Baakenhafen are to be expected at the end of 2012 / beginning of 2013.

A large new bridge across Baakenhafen harbor is one of the first civil engineering works to include proven high sustainability standards. In itself it is an architectonic highlight: it should be ready in summer 2013. Until that time comes, a multifaceted cultural temporary use will fill the southern point of the harbor basin with life.

Press contacts:

HafenCity Hamburg GmbH
Susanne Bühler, Head of Communications
Tel: +49 (0)40 37 47 26 - 14; Mobile: +49 (0)170 32 12 916
Email: buehler@HafenCity.com

Latest information: www.HafenCity.com
Press images at https://presse.hafencity.com

Press release HafenCity GmbH Hamburg

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