Nearly 15% more vacancy in Zeist by developing new municipal office
Building for vacancy
Where there is a nationwide stop to the development of new office locations to reduce vacancy and to prevent impoverishment of older buildings, the municipality of Zeist does not hesitate – under Mayor Koos Janssen – to develop a new municipal office. The municipality of Zeist rather spends EUR 20 million of public money and adds mercilessly about 4,400 sqm of vacancy to the already high office vacancy rate in Zeist.
In collaboration with developer Kondor Wessels, the municipality will expand the town hall at Het Rond with a new municipal office. The municipal departments which are currently located just 50 meters away in the building at the Slotlaan 20, will be accomodated in this extension. This includes the public hall of the municipality of Zeist. PingProperties is an investment management organization with major interests at the Dutch office market and owner of the future almost empty building at the Slotlaan 20.
Not only because of the vacancy in the office market the new development is questionable. The municipality is apparently prepared to sacrifice the most exclusive local historical sight for the realization of a new municipal office. As per the building scheme, the characteristic city hall at Het Rond will be fully enclosed by a solid-looking modern block of buildings. Also between Het Rond, the 1st Dorpsstraat and the Walkartpark 100 residential properties will be build, plus an underground parking garage with 200 parking places. This significant housing program will be realized purely to finance the new municipal office. It is clear that the assumptions with regard to the residential development applied in 2008/2009 are no longer applicable in the poor housing market of this moment. It hardly needs saying that the appearance of this part of Zeist will undergo a huge change. Of course, tastes differ, but for such a major change in the character, appearance and perception of the most characteristic piece of Zeist weighty arguments should be invoked.
In the autumn of 2009 PingProperties presented plans to the aldermen of that time, Gudde and Berkhout, to redevelop the building at Slotlaan 20, because the building at the Slotlaan offers more than enough room for the municipality. If the municipality would decide to stay in this building the owner is willing to invest substantially in the building. PingProperties made it clear to the aldermen that the proposed redevelopment of the Slotlaan 20 could be done ‘budget neutral’ for the municipality. The mayor and municipal executives however, indicated in 2009 that they were not directly interested in the proposed redevelopment of the Slotlaan 20. PingProperties therefore wonders whether the municipal building committee, the National Monument Commission but also the City Council and the public were informed of this excellent alternative to the drastic new building at Het Rond. If authorities and the public want to make a good judgement, openness would be required in this matter.
When the conduct of the municipality of Zeist is followed and when looking at the preliminary discussions with the Local and National Monument Commission it may be questioned whether the municipality, in exercising its public functions relating to the local planning, can keep enough distance from the interest the municipality has in realizing its new municipal office.Go back
PingProperties extends lease with Gall & Gall in Carnisse Veste shopping centre in Barendrecht
PingProperties has recently extended the lease with Gall & Gall (Ahold) for the long term. The lease is for approximately 223 m² of retail space on the ground floor of the covered arcade at Van Beuningenhaven 9.
RVB renews lease and expands in the Cascade complex in Groningen
PingProperties has concluded a lease with the Central Government Real Estate Agency (Rijksvastgoedbedrijf – RVB) for approx. 13,500 m² in the Cascade complex in Groningen. Besides the complex’s central location near the station and its architectural and structural quality, the sustainability improvements are a major reason for the RVB to commit itself to the complex for the longer term. The renewed lease is for approx. 8,600 m2 of office space and 70 parking spaces at Cascadeplein 8-10, with the addition of approx. 4,870 m2 of office space and 69 parking spaces at Cascadeplein 1-3. This means that the Cascade complex is now fully let.
PingProperties concludes new lease with food retailer Eat Kip for Passage Schiedam shopping centre
PingProperties recently concluded a 5-year lease with food retailer Eat Kip for approx. 200 m² GFA in Passage Schiedam shopping centre. Eat Kip’s business will be at a prominent location in the unit directly next to the entrance from Broersvest.