One of the architecturally most impressive shopping centers in Germany opened today at 9 am close to the Eurobahnhof central station in Saarbrücken. The investor in the 170-million project is CREDIT SUISSE ASSET MANAGEMENT Immobilien Kapitalanlagegesellschaft mbH, which holds the plot in its open-ended real estate fund CS EUROREAL portfolio. ECE realized the project and will be responsible for the long-term management of the center.
With the opening of the Europa-Galerie, Saarbrücken is provided with around 900 new full- and part-time jobs. The Europa-Galerie has been constructed on the premises of the former Saar-Galerie and the old Bergwerksdirektion (mining directorate).
The historical part of the Bergwerksdirektion has been completely preserved and the building integrated as own component in the Europa-Galerie. The patio between the former Saar-Galerie and the Bergwerksdirektion is spanned with a particularly light and translucent foil construction made of the special material ethylene-tetrafluoroethylene creating a space with unique atmosphere.
The Bergwerksdirektion has become one of the main entrances to the center and allows the direct connection of the shopping center to the Bahnhofstrasse as most important shopping street in Saarbrücken.
Lord Mayor Charlotte Britz: "The Europa-Galerie enriches Saarbrücken and will contribute to increase to regional capital's attractiveness particularly supraregionally. Saarbrücken thus strengthens its position as shopping city in the Saar-Lor-Lux region and I hope that we can in this way attract more visitors to Saarland's capital.
"The Europa-Galerie with its high-class internal and external architecture is one of Germany's most outstanding shopping centers and will give further positive impetus to the regional capital Saarbrücken as business location," says Karl-Heinz Heuss, Managing Director of CREDIT SUISSE ASSET MANAGEMENT Immobilien Kapitalanlagegesellschaft mbH.
ECE CEO Alexander Otto: "The integration of the historical Bergwerksdirektion characterizes the Europa-Galerie's special charm. Due to its central location, the completed Europa-Galerie will positively influence Saarbrücken's city center and unfold a magnetic effect far beyond the city borders of Saarbrücken."
The listed components of the Bergwerksdirektion have been complexly restored and are now accessible to the public for the very first time. This includes historic staircases with cast-iron flights of stairs, an originally preserved Villeroy & Boch ceramic tiled floor, a ballroom as well as precious leaded windows.
Credit Suisse and ECE closely cooperated with the Saarbrücken's Bureau of Preservation of Monuments during the restoration and have met the monumental protection requirements to the full extent despite most difficult conditions.