Three new architecturally sophisticated buildings with shops, bars and a hotel plus a new pedestrian and public areas invite you to stay – this is the promise of the redesign of Georg-Kronawitter-Platz (formerly Sattlerplatz) in the city centre, the row of houses behind the Kaufingerstraße. But it can only become a reality if the city agrees to a real estate deal with two private parties.
With negotiations going on for a year and a half, the largest city council group is now issuing an ultimatum: “At least in the first half of the year” they want clarity, says Anna Hanush, leader of the green/pink list, “the earlier the better.” The difficult negotiations are “extremely troublesome because an important project in the center of the city center has been delayed,” Hanush adds. “There’s a lot of money at stake here, but so far I haven’t seen a case that has taken so long.”
Hanusch also thinks a farewell to the previous project is conceivable. A year ago, when the stagnation of negotiations became public, your group had “asked for Plan B, how to proceed with the actions of the Development Plan, perhaps in a different configuration”. So far, the city wants to give its plot of land on which the Hermer parking garage is located to a joint venture owned by fashion and real estate firm Hermer and real estate developer Hummer AG.
A new building will be built in place of the multi-storey Hermer car park
A city council decision on this matter in 2017 was criticized by the then opposition Green Party. By coining it “with a different configuration,” Hanusch indicates that the city can allocate the property to someone else. “We assume that negotiations will be concluded by the end of the first half of 2022,” says Christian Müller, Hanusch’s coalition partner, leader of the SPD/Volt parliamentary group.
The city has been preoccupied with the idea of a fundamental redesign of the area between Färbergraben and Fürstenfelder Straße for years. The current plan, which is based on an urban development project by the architectural firm of Norman Foster, provides for a new building constructed by Hermer/Hammer on the site of the parking garage, where Hermer operates a branch of his fashion house. Apartments are also planned. Hans Hammer, president of Hammer AG, threatened to leave the company just under a year ago if the rent demanded was too high.
A spokeswoman for the municipal department explains that they “remain in a permanent and constructive exchange with both negotiating partners”. The talks are “in an advanced stage, but they are not over yet.” If the parties reach an agreement, the city council will have to confirm it.
Apple Store moves into a building with glass architecture
Another peculiarity of this unusual project is that, according to its spokeswoman, local government official Christina Frank “is not related to the matter at her request, since she maintains personal acquaintances with one of the negotiating partners. All operations for this are carried out exclusively through her deputy.” Hans Hammer was the campaign manager when Frank was the OB candidate for CSU in 2020. Hammer is now a member of the CSU city council, but he maintains that his political work and his business interests should be strictly separated. According to his spokeswoman, Hammer could not be reached for comment on the status of the negotiations. An out-of-office notice has been sent to the person in charge of the Hirmer Group via email.
The city’s second negotiating partner is the Inkammer family holding company. It owns the former post building opposite the parking garage as well as the undeveloped area in front of it. The city’s real estate extends from the parking garage to the Inca estates. The plan is for the city and Inka to switch space and Inka to build an additional building in the center of the plaza with stunning glass architecture, where – it is said – the Apple Store will move. A new hotel will be built on the site of the post office building with a public square in front of it. But all this only works if the property exchange is successful. Inselkammer’s real estate attorney, Thilo Fichtner, said in the spring that the project would not fail with the stock exchange. He does not want to comment on the current situation.
You can hear from uptown that the negotiators are going around big sums and that the city shouldn’t be giving away millions to investors. On the other hand, Anna Hanush also notes that a change of course by the city “will lead to additional work and further delays. So we still hope to reach an agreement.” But she stresses that “one will again be made aware of the alternative ways available to continue the project.”
However, the planning department states that it is ‘good practice’ in Munich for development planning procedures to be completed only if the landowner and the city agree on an outcome. This may take a little longer, especially in “extremely complex inner-city locations”. In any case, the planning process can only continue after ownership issues have been clarified.
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