New shopping attraction at Westenhellweg opens its doors (DE)

Dortmund's new downtown attraction celebrates its premiere: after a construction period of around two years, the new Thier-Galerie at Westenhellweg street opens on Thursday, September 15, 2011, with around 160 specialist stores, restaurants, cafés, and service businesses.

Thier-Galerie in Dortmund

Thier-Galerie provides a total of approx. 33,000 m² of sales area.

Thier-Galerie provides a total of approx. 33,000 m² of sales area, more than 5,000 m² for offices and a fitness center as well as more than 730 parking spaces. Around 1,000 people will be working in the center.

An architectonical highlight is another building in the glass-covered interior of the Thier-Galerie – the four-story 'house within the house', which is connected via a total of 25 bridges with the surrounding malls.

The long-term management of the Thier-Galerie lies in the hands of ECE, who also developed and planned the project.

With an investment volume of approx. €300 million, the Thier-Galerie is one of the largest privately financed buildings realized in Europe during the financial crisis.

Equity partners are Hamburg Trust (56%), ECE/Otto Group (25%) as well as various private investors (19%). The debt capital in the amount of €180 million is provided by DG HYP/Dortmunder Volksbank as joint mandated lead arrangers as well as by the banks Sparkasse Dortmund and Bochum.

Via two closed real estate funds issued by Hamburg Trust a total of 3,400 private investors acquired an interest in the Thier-Galerie – around 40% of the investors are from Dortmund and the surrounding region.

After the excellent cooperation during the planning and construction phase, Lord Mayor of Dortmund, Ullrich Sierau, is now looking forward to the start of the Thier-Galerie: "The quality of the external design and the unique concept will quickly fill the people with enthusiasm. The new shopping center will enrich Dortmund's city and will make it much more interesting for the catchment area surrounding it.

"I am proud that ECE as European shopping center market leader chose to become active here. Last but not least this is major proof of confidence in Dortmund."

ECE CEO Alexander Otto: "The Thier-Galerie creates modern highlights in terms of urban development and architecture. The visitors can look forward to a spectacular and unique center – a new trademark in the heart of Dortmund's city."

For the sales area of the new Thier-Galerie, ECE compiled a balanced mixture of shops and branches – among others with numerous fashion and gastronomy businesses. More than 40% of the shop concepts are new in Dortmund such as the Californian cult brand Hollister, the Irish fashion chain operator Primark or the Danish label Vila Clothes.

Among the other specialist stores are, for example, Intersport Voswinkel, a REWE grocery store, a Thalia book store, the home accessories chain operator Depot, the shoe house Zumnorde, a BVB shop as well as the fashion retailers New Yorker and H&M.

Another point of attraction is the 'Apollinaris Food Lounge', a gastronomy area with 14 different providers and a joint seating area with a

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