District of Düren grows

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The structural change in the Düren district opens up many interesting prospects for investors in the property sector. The district has now presented various future projects at the leading trade fair in Munich, Expo Real.

Whether new development areas, residential neighbourhoods or business parks, there are a variety of exciting investment opportunities for investors from the property sector in the Düren district. Particularly in the context of the Düren district’s 300,000+ growth campaign, unique opportunities exist to develop forward-looking projects together with the towns and municipalities. At Real Expo 2021, District Administrator Wolfgang Spelthahn together with representatives of the local authorities presented several lighthouse projects that radiate far beyond the borders of the region between Aachen and Cologne.

“The district of Düren is innovative, family-friendly and modern. We’re tackling the structural transition together with our municipalities and the region and we have a unique chance to redesign the district. It is important that there is solidarity between the district, its municipalities and the region, and all in all we’re on the right track,” stated Spelthahn at a workshop with investors in Munich. The trade fair offers the opportunity to present the 300,000+ growth campaign to an international audience. The core of the intention is to work closely with the local authorities to increase the population of the Düren district from the current 270,000 to more than 300,000 over the next few years. 

A focus on sustainable growth

District Administrator Spelthahn emphasised the importance of shaping growth sustainably and in the interests of climate protection. The project is not only guided by figures but also by quality criteria, and in addition to climate protection the focus is on digitalisation and education, as well as attractive jobs and leisure activities. The presentation of the lighthouse projects demonstrated how such targets can be achieved in practice.

One of the key innovation topics in the Düren district is developing a hydrogen economy. Dr. Martin Robinius from Umlaut Energy GmbH presented the district’s strategy and referred, among other things, to a survey according to which the production and use of hydrogen alone will create almost 800 new jobs in the district to the year 2035.

To make sure that further innovative business ideas flourish in the Düren district, a start-up centre and start-up village is being planned at the Brainergy Park Jülich. Dr. Bernhard Hoffschmidt presented the project, which is being funded by the State of NRW with 6.3 million euros as announced in Munich by Christoph Dammermann, State Secretary in the NRW Ministry of Economic Affairs.

Pioneering projects

Three pioneering projects from the district’s local authorities were also presented at the investor workshop.

•  The Mayor and Deputy Mayor of Düren, Frank-Peter Ullrich and Thomas Hissel, explained the plans for the envisaged new town district at Düren railway station. Here as well the focus is on active climate protection and resource-conserving building as incentives for entrepreneurial spirit and modernity. The heart of the project is the “Innovation Quarter / Innovation Center Düren”, a forward-looking start-up and technology centre with a co-working space. In the future, real-world laboratories of regional industrial companies are to be located on around 100,000 square metres, including the Model Paper Factory, the Digital Nonwoven Innovation Center and the Smart Urban Skin innovation lab.

•  Georg Gelhausen, Mayor of the municipality of Merzenich, presented the project “Morschenich-Alt – Location of the Future”. The community would actually have had to make way for the Hambach open-cast mine up to 2024 but is now being preserved due to the early coal phase-out. Innovative forms of housing are to be established here as well as start-ups and scientific and educational institutions from the cross-sectional areas of agriculture and climate protection. 

•  Jürgen Frantzen, Mayor of the rural community of Titz, presented the Primus Quarter, which is also exemplary for other projects as part of the district of Düren’s 300,000+ growth campaign. In addition to modern and family-friendly residential space there is also an educational campus with a school, nursery, family centre, sports facilities and co-working space. 

“We can see just how many good ideas and creativity characterise the district of Düren and its communities,” summarised District Administrator Wolfgang Spelthahn. “I’m quite sure that with the support of everyone involved we’ll be able to shape the structural change in a highly positive way for the people of the region.”