Globally connected and regionally tightly knit - a high-quality real estate location is currently emerging at Düsseldorf International Airport: Airport City.
Directly adjacent to the terminal of the third largest airport in Germany, the modern business park offers attractive conditions for operating successfully in global and regional markets. "Due to its location next to Düsseldorf Airport, Airport City provides businesses with immediate access to the commercial centers of the world," in the words of Christoph Blume, CEO of Flughafen Düsseldorf GmbH. Airport City has optimal transport connections and is located at the center of one of Europe's most important commercial regions with millions of people and benefits from the dynamics of the Düsseldorf region.
The project itself is also dynamic: Flughafen Düsseldorf Immobilien GmbH (FDI), a subsidiary of Flughafen Düsseldorf GmbH, has developed the 23-hectare property and has designed an exceptional business-park. The legally binding land-use plan supports a development of about 230,000 square meters of gross floor area. The size of the constructions sites can be designed from 3,000 to 30,000 square meters gross floor area. More than half of the sites have already been sold to renowned owner-occupiers and investors. The first construction phase - covering about one third of the total area - has already been realized. The airport augurs well to have sold the entire site to investors by 2016.
Optimal Transport Connections
Airport City has excellent connections. 77 airlines depart from Düsseldorf to 180 destinations around the world, and about 600 departures and arrivals a day ensure numerous worldwide connections. Travelers need only minutes to reach the check-in counter from their desks in Airport City. By this Düsseldorf being the third largest German airport is once more making a name for itself as the airport of the short distances. The site has direct access to autobahn A44 as well as there are good connections to the local public transportation system, commuter trains and the long-distance train network of the Deutsche Bahn. Taxis and rental car companies complete the available transportation. In terms of traffic, Airport City ranks among the most developed sites of the German industrial zone.
In the Heart of a Dynamic Region
Airport City it is located at the center of an economic region with immense potential. Nine million people live within a radius of 50 kilometers, 18 million people within 100 kilometers. The market is thus comparable in size to the markets of London and Paris. Ten of the thirty DAX companies are based in North Rhine-Westphalia, and some 400,000 companies operate in the Rhine-Ruhr region. Düsseldorf International is thus the most significant airport in Germany's most important economic region. In this environment, Airport City is an exclusive location with a special ambience. Besides the attractive location at the terminal it is also the great and manifold range of shopping and catering opportunities and services that is vital. "No second office location has a comparable offer," says Blume.
Business Park with Green Areas and Recreation Zones
Renowned architectural offices plan and realise the administrative buildings according to the underlying clear concept of town planning creating thus a harmonic overall picture. The attractive external design increases the quality of Airport City even more. Parks designed of high-value and green areas enhance among other things the business park. "Representative areas and recreation zones with direct links to the neighborhood have been created for the people who work in Airport City, for visitors and residents," says Blume.
This outdoor area design plays an important role in the design process and was integrated into the concept from the very beginning. In order to insure this claim an international competition to define the free spaces had been held, in order to define the parameters of for the surface design, kinds and arrangement of trees, and lawn areas.
"The overall concept of the park areas, squares, and streets is based on the classic components of landscaping - single trees and groups of trees. They are combined with meadows and woods-like areas, water areas and shaped grounds," explains Blume. For example, more than 2,400 different valuable trees were planted, among them almost 2,000 birches which have been arranged to groups of trees. Furthermore, more than 3,000 shrubs such as yews, box trees and diverse bushes were planted; they can be trimmed to form high-value arrangements.
Three centers determine the character of the outdoor area in Airport City: the city square, the city garden and the bordering green areas of the citizens' park. The square is a quiet area with two islands of plants including some of the original vegetation and ponds. The green center of Airport City is the city garden located in the midst of the business park.
Overview of Current Projects
By now, the airport has become a center of significant convention events since the first Maritim Hotel in Düsseldorf opened its doors in December 2007. "As key project of the business park, the hotel has proven to be a magnet for further concepts that are coalescing to a new economic center," says Blume. "The congress hotel is both entrée and calling card of Airport City." The building offers room for 5,400 guests in two halls and 31 conference rooms and is thus the largest four-star congress hotel in North Rhine-Westphalia. It has 533 rooms. The architecturally sophisticated building complex is an optical extension of the airport's terminal, which it is connected to by a passage. Owing to the Maritim and the other conference centers at the airport, the location Düsseldorf International has turned into an important congress center.
The Verein Deutscher Ingenieure (VDI), Europe's largest Association of Engineers, decided upon the location Airport City and relocated its headquarters directly adjacent to the Maritim Hotel. Start of construction of the building was in June 2006 and in the summer of 2008 the VDI moved into it. 500 employees found their new place of work in the office complex of about 11,500 square meters office floor space. Every year the VDI carries out up to 650 information meetings and further training courses on 300 topics, most of them taking place in Airport City.
The Züblin Development GmbH also decided to invest in Airport City. It developed, among other things, a five-storey office building with 5,700 square meters of usable space and underground parking. The building was completed by the end of 2007 and has already been leased. An example for one of the leaseholders: The radiology and high-tech medical institute "radprax" has a long-term lease on some 2,200 square meters in the building. The great success in rentals moved Züblin to invest in a similar building with 6,200 square meters in a similar second construction segment. This building, named "Le Ciel", was completed by the end of 2008. Two floors have been leased to WTS AG, for example, an internationally operating tax consulting company.
Beyond that, Strabag Real Estate GmbH, former Züblin Development GmbH, acquired a third plot within Airport City - and has already begun with the construction of the project called "Airport Garden's." The calculated gross floor area amounts to 14,000 square meters.
In addition, the group of companies Gottfried Schultz has acquired a plot of 7,750 square meters within Airport City. Germany's largest Porsche Centers was established there in November 2008: The entire product line of the sports car manufacturer is presented in a 2,500 square meter showroom.
The firm CFI Conzept für Immobilien GmbH, Frankfurt, completed in 2008 two buildings: Airport Office I and II. Both buildings have been leased completely. The CFI managed to establish itself in Airport City to such an extend that it decided to acquire a further site of about 2,300 square meters in 2008. That is where the CFI realized its project Airport Office III - a six-storey administration building with some 5,100 square meters of gross floor area. This object was completed by autumn in 2009. The first leaseholders have already moved in.
Also in the autumn of 2009, Development Partner AG completed a distinctive administrative building, the "Airgate", with 5,000 square meters of gross floor area. Together with the Maritim Hotel the seven-storey property forms the entrée into Airport City. The majority of the leaseholders already moved into the building.
South of VDI headquarters Frankonia Eurobau Projektentwicklung GmbH is planning an office building named "Panta Rhei." The start of construction works is scheduled for spring 2010.
Probably already within this year Dr. Greve Bau und Boden AG, Hamburg, will start the construction of the administrative building "Airpark", which has about 13,800 square meters of gross floor area and is directly adjacent to "Airport Garden's."
Hochtief Projektentwicklung GmbH, Essen, is constructing an administrative building of about 11,500 square meters gross floor area for the Düsseldorf subsidiary of the Siemens AG. The completion is scheduled for late summer in 2010.
Already by the end of 2005, the Flughafen Düsseldorf Immobilien GmbH located as her first project the underground car park P8 with approximately 1,850 parking spaces as an infrastructural measure for Airport City.
Airport - More than Aviation
For Düsseldorf International Airport real estate development represents an important component of corporate strategy for the systematic buildup of the location. The centerpiece is the development of Airport City. Flughafen Düsseldorf GmbH is constantly expanding its range of services all around aviation. An important growth sector is, for example, the non-aviation business. "We will continue to expand our offer, develop new products, and orient our plans to our customers' requirements," says Blume.
Düsseldorf Airport City at a glance
Area: 232,000 m2
Location: southwest in direct vicinity of the terminal
Construction period: until 2016
Gross floor area: 250,000 m2
Buildings: 3,000 to 30,000 m2
Development: Flughafen Düsseldorf Immobilien GmbH
Realisation of the buildings: investors
Parking garage P8: completed in 2005
Maritim Congress Hotel: completed in 2007
Züblin Development GmbH: Airport I: completed in 2007; Le Ciel: completed in 2008
CFI Conzept für Immobilien GmbH: Airport Office I & II: completed in 2008; Airport Office III: completed in 2009
VDI headquarters: completed in 2008
Porsche Center Düsseldorf: completed in 2008
Development Partner AG: Airgate: completed in 2009
Projects currently under construction
Strabag Real Estate GmbH: Airport Garden's: probably completed in 2010
Hochtief Projektentwicklung GmbH: Siemens: probably completed in 2010
In process of planning
Frankonia Eurobau AG: Panta Rhei: in process of planning
Dr. Greve Bau und Boden AG: Airpark: in process of planning
For more information, see www.dus-airportcity.de.