Bonn · The Bundesviertel has not seen such a major construction project for many years: the city of Bonn has sold an area of 11,500 square metres to the Deutsche Post DHL Group. The new DHL building in Bonn’s Bundesviertel is to provide space for 2,500 jobs.
The DPDHL group wants to erect a massive office building with about 2,500 work places within walking distance of the UN Campus train station in order to accommodate employees who are currently working in various rented offices in Bonn. In comparison, about 2,200 women and men work in the Post Tower. It has been leaked that the Council agreed to the deal, which is to bring the city 9.3 million euros, in a non-public meeting on Monday.
According to the confidential draft resolution submitted by the city administration, Detusche Post is planning the headquarters of its DHL division in the new building. “We are pleased that the Council has granted us the right to buy the land in Baunscheidtstraße”, said Post spokeswoman Hannah Braselmann on Thursday. “We are in the midst of carrying out many different ballots and can therefore not provide any further details.”
However, the Group had already announced the project in April 2018. The plan was for an elongated building with five storeys, a smaller top storey and 52,000 square meters of total floor space. The investment will be “well over one hundred million euros”.
Deutsche Post wanted construction to start in 2020, which will no longer be possible. The architectural competition has already been concluded and a project-related development plan procedure has been initiated. However, the procedure can take up to two years, and the majority of the Council had attached importance to the fact that the framework planning for the entire federal district should be drawn up first. This is now the case (see info box “The framework plan”).
Bonn citizen’s association considers the selling price to be too low
In total, the construction site at Baunscheidtstrasse 3-9, 13 and 15 is about 16,000 square metres in size. For the project, Deutsche Post still needs neighbouring areas from other owners – including the municipal Vebowag, which is to move its administration that is currently located there. The purchase price for the urban plots is provisional and is based on the actual office space, which will be approved later. The amount will then be finalised by the Property Valuation Committee. A down payment of 2.5 million euros is due on 30 January 2020, after which the usage rights and obligations for the site will be transferred to the group.
In contrast to previous property sales at the main railway station and at the Bonner Bogen, the city will be better protected this time against additional costs caused by clearing contaminated waste, which could be deducted from the purchase price by the purchaser. According to the draft resolution, this risk is capped in the contract at a maximum amount of one million euros at the expense of the city. Should the disposal of contaminated waste cost more than two million euros, the Post will again have the right to withdraw. The city wants to commission an expert to check the measures on site.
Some Green and Left politicians on the council as well as the citizen’s association of Bonn (BBB) voted against the sale. The BBB considers the selling price to be too low and fears an intensification of the traffic problems in the quarter, as can be seen from the confidential minutes of the meeting.
(Original text: Andreas Baumann, translation John Chandler)