One of the most modern and architecturally sophisticated inner-city shopping centers in Germany opened today, Wednesday September 29, 2010, at 8 am, after a two-and-a-half-year long construction period at the premises of the former 'Zollhofhafen' customs hall complex.
The 220-million project has been realized by the investor Union Investment Real Estate GmbH and ECE, who will be responsible for the center's long-term management. With the opening of the Rhein-Galerie, around 1,200 new full and part-time jobs have been created in Ludwigshafen. The Rhein-Galerie provides the inhabitants of Ludwingshafen for the very first time direct and attractive access from the city to the banks of the Rhine: with an area of nearly 10,000 m², the Rhine promenade with its own gastronomy invites the visitors to stay and stroll, and creates a meeting place for culture and events.
Lord Mayor Dr. Eva Lohse: "With the opening of the Rhein-Galerie a fundamental component of our urban redevelopment titled 'Today for Tomorrow' has been realized. Now it will be possible to go shopping, strolling, and stop by directly at the Rhine banks in Ludwigshafen. This is unique in the region. With the opening of the Rhein-Galerie, the regional center Ludwigshafen is attractively positioning itself for the future also in terms of retail."
Dr. Frank Billand, member of the management board at Union Investment Real Estate GmbH: "The Rhein-Galerie is characterized in all aspects by high quality. Out of experience in cooperating with ECE for center projects in Essen, Darmstadt and Remscheid we can say: Ludwigshafen can look forward to a perfect, professionally managed shopping experience."
ECE CEO Alexander Otto: "The completed Rhein-Galerie with the enclosed Rhine promenade will positively influence Ludwigshafen's cityscape and creates a world of experience shopping reaching far beyond the city boundaries. I am pleased that with the Rhein-Galerie we finally managed to integrate the Rhine in Ludwigshafen's cityscape."
With a total catchment area of more than one million people, the Rhein-Galerie represents a modern communication meeting point for the complete region.
The most characteristic feature of the gallery is the membrane roof, which at nighttime will be illuminated in blue and white in turns. The wave-like rhythm of its lateral arches demonstrates the connection to water. Also inside the shopping center a fountain with a seven meters high plume of water creates a topical reference to the Rhine.
The Rhein-Galerie was already awarded the pre-certificate in gold by the German Sustainable Building Council (DGNB) for sustainable planning as well as urban integration.
All shop areas are completely leased out at the time of th