Oberhausen, 5 May 2006. The ground-breaking has been done. NRW economics minister Christa Thoben, Duisburg's Mayor Adolf Sauerland and Kölbl Kruse GmbH, the Essen project developer and investor, symbolically did the ground-breaking together with Hitachi Europe representatives. This means another building site in Duisburg. Until mid-August 2007 Kölbl Kruse will be building the new corporate head offices of Hitachi Power Europe GmbH (HPE) at the inner port together with Hochtief Construction AG..
Continuous HPE growth necessitates move
HPE is rapidly growing thanks to excellent competitive products, a buoyant worldwide demand for economical and environmentally-friendly power plants and a strong technological position. HPE is responsible for the markets in Europe, the former CIS states, Africa and the Near and Middle East. "We plan and build turnkey plants and key components for fossil-fired power plants including modern flue gas cleaning equipment, utility steam generators as well as gas and steam turbines. Our workforce increased by over 50% from company beginnings in 2003 up to the start of 2006. This dynamic growth has made it necessary for the company to move", says Klaus J. Schmitz, Managing Director of Hitachi Power Europe GmbH, at the start of building the new "Hitachi Power Office" at the inner port. The just under 600 employees of the company should be moving into the seven-storey office property in the second half of 2007.
Key data: Hitachi Power Office
There is room for 200 cars on two levels in the underground car park; a further 140 can park outside. In keeping with the design of Hagen architects Bahl & Partner, project developers Stephan Kölbl and Dr. Marcus Kruse will realize another architectural highlight right next to the Five Boats office complex on the north bank – due particularly to its striking silver color. Aluminium outside and steel elements within will be like "a silver thread" going through the building.
Urbanistic feature on the north bank
"Within just 15 months we want to build the Hitachi Power Office and, at the same time, fill the gap with an attractive property with 20,000 sq. m. of office space“, announce project developers Stephan Kölbl and Dr. Marcus Kruse. "The building will plug new development on the north bank of the inner port to the west with an urbanistic feature." The Essen duo have already realized two new building projects at the inner port (Five Boats, Inner Port office block) and converted the listed "Speicher Allgemeine" warehouse into a modern office building.
Economics minister welcomes choice of the site
From numerous properties on offer within a 30 km radius of Oberhausen, the inner port proposed by the Duisburg economic development agency won the day. "I am glad that Hitachi Power Europe GmbH has opted for Duisburg. Thanks to the support by NRW and the EU, the inner port is a model example of successful structural transformation. It has developed into Duisburg's favorite office location and one of the most attractive addresses in the Ruhr", says Economics Minister Christa Thoben. The Minister went on to say that the Hitachi subsidiary was contributing to NRW maintaining its leadership in power plant technology. "The competence of the company in developing and building efficient, environmental-friendly power plants is of immense importance for the coming renewal of NRW's power generation system."
A lively urban quarter alongside the water
The 1.8 km long Duisburg inner port used to be the cereal and timber harbor. It has been developed into a lively urban quarter by converting former warehouses and constructing new buildings on the basis of Norman Foster's master plan. Work, living and leisure are all linked to each other. The area has become a top office address in the Rhine/Ruhr region. The rents are the highest in the Ruhr and major companies such as alltours, Novitas Vereinigte BKK and the Fasselt & Partner audit company have all had their head offices constructed here.
Mayor Sauerland backs favorable climate for investment
"Exemplary for the excellent interaction of industry, business promotion and administration in Duisburg", that is how Mayor Adolf Sauerland describes the success had with industrial settlement. "One wheel interacts with the other when it is a matter of realizing investments in the city. Perspectives are collectively revealed here in the shortest of times, obstacles removed and companies supported by everyone" – this was the thank-you of the municipal head to all those involved.
New era begins: History of the plot of land
Sauerland also means the commitment shown by Duisburg's industry. To this end, the settlement of HPE on the 4,000 sq. m. of land marks the beginning of a new era. Two rundown warehouses and a small office building had remained vacant for 20 years up to 2004 when the Duisburg SGE Stüdemann-Grundbesitz-Entwicklung GmbH company set up a property company. It purchased the plot of land in a sale by court order, thus setting the points for future marketing. Just 18 months after the auction a beautiful swan is to emerge from the ugly duckling - one nicknamed by the press as "the dingy warehouse".
Mr. Helge Schulz
Tel.: +49 (0)203 / 8038 - 2929