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We develop your project

PROJECT DEVELOPMENT

Whether shopping centers, office complexes, logistics centers, hotels and residential quarters, but also special real estate such as educational facilities and cultural buildings – in keeping with our motto "Creating space, inspiring people", we plan, build and hand over properties that are both sustainable and technically functional and that inspire people and give them room to grow. Experienced in the development of all asset classes, we offer all the links of the value chain, from conception to implementation, from one source.


Developer with real estate services

From the project idea, the initiation phase and the elaboration of the master plan, through to finding and securing the right plot of land, to the project concept and implementation strategy, our project experts lay the foundation for the future success of the property.

In conjunction with our general planning, we deliver holistic planning and project management – on this scale, unique in Europe. And even after completion of the property you can count on our full in-house service: We are also happy to assume on your behalf the sale and letting as well as the ongoing asset management of the property.

Developer mit Immobiliendienstleistungen

A business district where the world meets

Together with STRABAG Real Estate we are developing, between the trade fair grounds and the Messe/Deutz railway station in Cologne, the MesseCity Cologne  – a modern business quarter totaling over 135,000 square meters of floor space spread out over six office and hotel properties, with room for the gastronomy trade, services and retail. Steffen Wittwer, Project Director, has been responsible for this exciting project development from the very beginning and reveals in an interview why it is so special.


Steffen, with MesseCity an exciting business district is currently being created in the middle of the Rhineland metropolis of Cologne, which we are developing together with STRABAG Real Estate. What makes this project so special?
MesseCity Cologne is about more than just the development and construction of a property. An entire quarter, with an impressive 135,000 square meters of gross floor area, is being created at a Triple A location. At the same time, there were two central challenges that we had to overcome to reach our goal: For one thing, a high pre-letting rate was required as a prerequisite for the realization. For another, together with our equal joint venture partner STRABAG Real Estate, we first had to convince the City of Cologne, as the seller of the plot of land, that we were exactly the right partner for this enormous development project – which we ultimately succeeded in doing.

It should also not be forgotten that, with this project, we are creating an attractive working environment for several thousand employees as well as a neighborhood with a high quality of life and welcoming stay in the area. With this development, the Deutz district is taking on renewed importance and is turning the site that was once purely for trade fairs into a place where people live and work.

What is ECE’s role in this project, and what is yours?
As with many of our major projects, we at ECE have a wide variety of tasks, which is what in the end makes it so exciting. On the one hand, we are the client’s representative for all services such as project management and control, and we take over the project management for property companies. This calls for close cooperation between us as developers and our colleagues from other business units such as Architecture & Construction. That is because we can offer innovative solutions to the challenges posed by such a major project only if we always work together as a strongly functioning team and benefit from each other’s expertise. On the other hand, we also act as a service provider: in the general planning, the placement process, in obtaining financing, approaching tenants and in the leasing for all types of use – office, hotel, retail and catering – for the property companies. In short, we offer the all-round carefree package. 

I, personally, am responsible for managing the property companies within the joint venture. In the course of this, my tasks here are also very versatile. For example, I also form the coordination interface with our partner STRABAG Real Estate.

What are the next steps for MesseCity – how far have planning, construction and marketing now progressed?
We are right on schedule: The second construction phase is currently in progress. The two office buildings, "Centraal" – another highlight with 16 levels and an unobstructed all-round view that takes in the Cologne Cathedral – and "Rossio" are in the marketing phase. Here, 30,000 square meters of lease areas that can be combined as required is currently only available in "Rossio". The three office buildings of the first construction phase have already been completed and were handed over to the new owner, the Zurich Group, at the end of last year. And despite the Corona pandemic, nothing stands in the way of the hotel property being handed over on schedule to the users Adina Apartment Hotels and Motel One, as well as the Messebalkon, the ‘Trade fair balcony’, with its open staircase that invites visitors to linger as the center of the quarter at the end of this year.

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