Today, 24 August, 2006, the Mayor of Arnhem, Pauline Krikke, will officially open the new shopping and residential area, known as the "Musiskwartier", in the center of Arnhem. Musiskwartier is a city center redevelopment project consisting of about 34,500 m² shops, including a new V&D department store (approximately 13,000 m²), an increase in the current car parking capacity to 750 spaces, an underground (free of charge) parking area for about 1000 bicycles and 76 luxury apartments for purchase.
Multi Vastgoed developed the Musiskwartier in collaboration with the Community of Arnhem and Maxeda (previously known as VendexKBB).
The project was bought by InterpolisVastgoed b.v. on behalf of the Agricultural Workers' Pension fund and the Foundation for "the Collaborative Pension Funds for the Meat Trades Sector". IEF Berlage is the owner of the V&D department store including parking deck and bicycle parking. The total investment is in the region of 120 million. The masterplan is from T+T Design of Gouda. Four teams of architects were responsible for the architectural design work: Robert A.M. Stern from New York, Kraaijvanger Urbis from Rotterdam, KOW architects from The Hague and Rappange & Partners from Amsterdam. The buildings blend harmoniously into the existing structures and the historical character of the city center. The new Musiskwartier is certain to increase the power of Arnhem as a shopping magnet throughout the region.
The project lies directly alongside the present shopping axis in the center of Arnhem and is enclosed by the Roggestraat, Land van de Markt, the Beekstraat, the Velperbinnensingel and the Nieuwstad. It consists of both new buildings and the redevelopment of V&D and existing monumental buildings. The design integrates a passage, rows of shops and a square with the existing shopping area. The 76 new apartments above the shops form a separate living world, with roof terraces, city gardens and attractive balconies. "The essence of the plan is that the back side of an inner-city area is being turned into the front door of the area, transforming an deteriorated part of the city center into a stylish public attraction", says urbanist Peter Trimp of T+T Design. The new buildings blend in perfectly with the existing structures. In this respect, careful attention has been paid to both the small-scale fabric of the city center and the coarse character and the specific architecture of Arnhem's network of streets.
This is a major inner-city development that is likely to have a major impact on the whole city and even on the surrounding area. From start to finish, the entire project will have taken some fourteen years.
"It represents a major intervention in the eastern part of the city center, where the actual building programme has lasted for about three years. This kind of construction work in the middle of a town centre involves a lot of give and take and demands a lot of patience from the parties concerned, the inhabitants and the retailers", says the Arnhem project alderman Sander van Bodegraven. "When the opening was in sight, the activities were intensified, with the aim of getting everything finished on time and that certainly caused some inconvenience. But now that it is all behind us, we can be proud of our achievement".
The Musiskwartier also includes a tunnel giving access to the Musisgarage. This has been carried out on behalf of the community of Arnhem and ensures that motorised traffic between Musis Sacrum and the Musiskwartier will be brought back to a minimum.
Attractive shopping opportunities
The architecture of the area and the variation of large stores such as C&A, H&M, The Sting, Blokker and specialist shops (such as Tommy Hilfiger, Rituals, Björn Borg, Geox, New Yorker and Score) make the shops in the Musiskwartier attractive and inviting. Architect Hans Goverde (from Kraaijvanger Urbis) describes the refurbished V&D department store as "a building like a beacon in town, a glass shopping palace." On the Brouwersplei