Tuesday

30th May 2017

New headquarters to clear €1bn, ECB admits

  • Occupy protesters outside the Frankfurt HQ earlier this year - German police have evicted the camp (Photo: Valentina Pop)

The cost of the European Central Bank's (ECB) new 45-floor headquarters will clear €1 billion according to a statement released by the bank to celebrate its "topping out ceremony."

At an opening even attended by Frankfurt's Mayor Peter Feldmann, ECB executive board member, Jorg Asmussen, said that the total cost of the twin tower skyscraper would be around €200 million higher than the original €850 million budget. He added that €530 million had already been spent on the work.

Dear EUobserver reader

Subscribe now for unrestricted access to EUobserver.

Sign up for 30 days' free trial, no obligation. Full subscription only 15 € / month or 150 € / year.

  1. Unlimited access on desktop and mobile
  2. All premium articles, analysis, commentary and investigations
  3. EUobserver archives

EUobserver is the only independent news media covering EU affairs in Brussels and all 28 member states.

♡ We value your support.

If you already have an account click here to login.

Building started in 2010 on the site of 1920s listed-building Grossmarkthalle, which had previously been used for Frankfurt's wholesale food market.

The building, which stands at 185 metres, consists of two polygonal office towers with 45 and 43 floors, respectively, connected by an atrium.

Described in the project plans as a "vertical city," the towers will bring the ECB's 2,600 staff together under the same roof.

Asmussen blamed the extra costs on unforeseen problems in converting the site, including late discoveries of contamination of the roof and insufficient steel support structures, as well as difficulties in finding a contractor to lead with the building work when the tender was originally put out in 2008.

He added that "the new premises will provide the ECB with a modern and functional headquarters, and I hope that they will be viewed by the people of Frankfurt, and beyond, as an enrichment of Frankfurt’s skyline and the landscape of Europe."

The construction is also running six months late, but the bank insists that it will be ready to open in January 2014.

Since its creation in 1998, the ECB has never owned its own home, instead renting its current "eurotower" headquarters as well as two other office blocks in the centre of Frankfurt.

The revelation comes at an awkward time for the ECB, which has been a chief player in the EU's response to the eurozone debt crisis.

Together with the European Commission and the IMF, the bank has formed part of the "Troika," demanding severe austerity measures from Greece, Ireland and Portugal in return for multi-billion euro bailouts. I

It has also played an active role in keeping government lending costs down through its bond-buying programmes.

Macron and Putin hold uneasy first talks

French and Russian leaders agreed to "strengthen" ties at their first meeting, but exchanged jabs about Russian efforts to influence French elections.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Centre Maurits CoppietersWhat's Going on in Catalonia? Join the Debate on 8 June
  2. Swedish EnterprisesDo We Need a More Social Europe? A Lively Debate Awaits You on 7 June
  3. Centre Maurits CoppietersDiscover the Role of Feminism in the Peripheries of Europe on 9 June
  4. Malta EU 2017EU Group Launched to Focus on Priorities and Policies Concerning Children
  5. UNICEFChild Alert on Myanmar: Fruits of Rapid Development yet to Reach Remote Regions
  6. Nordic Council of MinistersBecome an Explorer - 'Traces of Nordic' Seeking Storytellers Around the World
  7. European Healthy Lifestyle AllianceHigh-Intensity Interval Training Is Therapeutic Option for Type 2 Diabetes
  8. Malta EU 2017Closer Cooperation and Reinforced Solidarity to Ensure Security of Gas Supply
  9. Dialogue Platform"The West Must Help Turkey Return to a Democratic Path" a Call by Fethullah Gulen
  10. ILGA-EuropeRainbow Europe 2017 Is Live - Which Countries Are Leading on LGBTI Equality?
  11. Centre Maurits CoppietersWhen You Invest in a Refugee Woman You Help the Whole Community
  12. Eurogroup for AnimalsECJ Ruling: Member States Given No Say on Wildlife Protection In Trade

Latest News

  1. Macron and Putin hold uneasy first talks
  2. From Greece to Scotland, we stand by Europe
  3. Juncker keen to build EU 'bridge' to Trump
  4. Ministers water down post-Dieselgate reform
  5. Club de combat: des espions russes recherchent des recrues européennes
  6. Judges refuse to 'let go' of Le Pen's fake jobs case
  7. Merkel: Europe cannot rely on its allies anymore
  8. Macron to tell Putin EU sanctions to stay