Bad Soden, Germany,

Real estate acquisition for Messer corporate headquarters complete

Industrial gas specialist Messer has just taken a big step closer to the construction of its new corporate headquarters in Bad Soden: The sales agreements for the acquisition of the relevant parcels of land from the German Railway (Deutsche Bahn AG) have now entered into force. By October 1, 2009 at the latest, Messer plans to commence construction of a multi-storey office complex, in order to relocate the company headquarters from Sulzbach am Taunus to the neighbouring municipality after a construction period of about one year. The ideal address in Bad Soden: Messer-Platz 1.

Initially up to 130 employees will work in Bad Soden, but even now plans for additions and expansion are already being created: “We are already planning for the next generation and want to establish a long-term bond with the new site,” says Stefan Messer, owner and CEO of the Messer Group. The construction of the office building and the renovation of the current railway station also include the construction of a further office and event centre for Messer. Some of the floor space on the ground floor of the Messer office building will be leased out.

Now that the sales agreements for the real estate for the office building, the adjacent event centre and the planned residential buildings have become legally binding, the family-owned company and Bad Soden Township have exchanged adjoining municipal land for portions of the railway grounds that were acquired. The buyers are spending a total of about 1.5 million euros to develop the entire complex. The entrepreneurial family plans to invest about 20 million euros in all. “The discussions with the Bad Soden Township have been very open at all times,” says Christof Spenrath, Senior Vice President Legal for the Messer Group. “Most of our proposals have been taken into consideration. We are confident that the planning and construction phases, which are ultimately aimed at establishing Bad Soden as the Messer Group’s home over the long-term, will be characterised by constructive cooperation.” The Federal Railway Authority will decommission the grounds and the German Railway (Deutsche Bahn AG) will have the existing railway lines removed by September 30, 2009. Excavation work for an underground parking facility and for the office building to be erected thereupon will commence no later than that date. The removal of the rail lines will create a plaza between the two Messer buildings – a plaza which will, in accordance with the agreements that have been reached, be called “Messer-Platz”. The municipal administration of Bad Soden will, within the context of its ultimate planning authority, be responsible for the harmonious development of this public space. In connection with this, Salinenstrasse will be re-routed. In the course of designing the overall layout of the railway station area, the township also intends to renovate and spruce up the existing “Am Bahnhof” car park and the surrounding area by 2010.