Interview with Anastasius Tschopp, Swiss Prime Site Immobilien AG
Swiss Prime Site expands the “Stücki Areal“ further. Interview with Anastasius Tschopp, Head Portfolio Management, Member of the Executive Board, Swiss Prime Site Immobilien AG.
The existing Science Park will be expanded on the “Stücki Areal” in two phases until 2022. Four “finger docks” with each two lab and office buildings will be developed between the Science Park and the Stücki-Mall and will create approx. 1’700 new jobs. This investment of approximately 180 million Swiss francs foresees a «campus» for innovation, knowledge, shopping and lifestyle, all on the “Stücki Areal“.
1. Why did Swiss Prime Site choose to further invest in Basel and to make a large investment on the “Stücki Areal”?
A. Tschopp: Basel is an exciting and dynamic market. The only thing it currently lacks for companies that plan to settle in the Canton of Basel-Stadt are larger areas that are modern and inter-connected. Within Switzerland, we also noticed that there are not enough spaces equipped to a high standard. This is true for commercial, office as well as laboratory uses.
2. What are the current market needs that you see?
The market needs are moving away from „core and shell“ to more built-out and finished spaces with amenities. In addition, once a leasing contract is signed, the tenant usually wants to move in quickly and prefers flexible terms.
3. What makes the Stücki Areal special?
We asked ourselves: How can we can satisfy the market requirements and demand in Basel? We quickly considered the „Stücki Areal“. On one hand because there is already a business park, on the other hand we have the shopping mall with a newly planned movie theatre at the “Stücki Areal”. The fact that we saw a huge potential for further development there and that we can develop it with a holistic plan in mind, we didn’t want to miss this chance.
4. Swiss Prime Site is known for its prominent buildings with excellent office infrastructure. At the “Stücki Areal”, besides two new office buildings are also two buildings exclusively for labs in planning. Is this part of a new business strategy?
A strategic focus in our projects is definitely to diversify usage. We have prior experience equipping existing buildings with new lab spaces and renting them out. Besides diversification our business strategy also circles around becoming more of a solution provider. We want to provide out-fitted and customized office and lab spaces. This is a very interesting investment for Swiss Prime Site. We want to be a front-runner and develop a far-reaching real estate project here.
5. Approximately 1700 new jobs will be created at the „Stücki Areal“. What kind of companies do you want to attract?
We want to attract a diverse mix of companies and start-ups. We already talked to a handful of companies, which normally wouldn’t be associated with such a «campus». Turns out that these companies actually want to be close to start-ups. The campus with its start-up ecosystem will have a pull effect even for established companies.
6. What role are you hoping for the Technologiepark Basel at the new campus?
The Technologiepark Basel has a great mix of life sciences and ICT start-ups. Should the Technologiepark Basel become too small at some point for any of these start-ups, we can offer a great platform for further growth.
7. Could you tell us more about the four finger docks, especially more about the two lab buildings? Are these chemical or bio labs? Can companies also house clean rooms or manufacturing in them?
During our last project analysis we learned that we cover 80% of the needs of biotech and chemical companies. We will continue in this direction so that we can hopefully cover the optimum.
8. The press release of January 12th 2017 mentioned a campus for innovation, knowledge, shopping and lifestyle will be developed at the „Stücki Areal“. How will the connection with the shopping mall be achieved?
The «campus spirit» should be felt everywhere, no matter whether you work, stay at the hotel, make use of the numerous shopping possibilities, or train at the fintness centre. In addition, we want to create a campus where entertainment is part of the whole experience. Because of the planned physically connecting elements, for example bridges or patios, it is possible to either work intensively or enjoy a sandwich during your break – all on the same campus. These relaxation spaces can also be used for networking or co-working activities. Work no longer happens statically at an office or laboratory desk, so we want to create the flexibility needed for this new way of working on the campus.
9. What is the implementation timeline for your project?
In a first phase we plan occupancy in 2019. The second phase will be finished by 2022.
10. Who can companies contact that want to learn more about these new spaces?
Wincasa is the local site manager; their offices are located in the Stücki shopping mall. (Christian Mutschler, Management Stücki Areal, Wincasa AG, phone +41 61 633 33 02). In addition, we as Swiss Prime Site are available as well to speak to interested parties (Anastasius Tschopp, Head Portfolio Management | Member of the Executive Board, Swiss Prime Site Immobilien AG, phone +41 58 317 17 17).
Commercial real estate has experienced excess demand in the Canton of Basel-Stadt for the last few years. Availalability of industrial, commercial and retail spaces has decreased since 2011. The Canton of Basel-Stadt welcomes Swiss Prime Site’s investment at the “Stücki Areal” in order to counter the supply shortfall of commercial real estate. The Canton of Basel-City is actively invested in real estate and was able to purchase various lots recently such as the Coop-Lysbüchel and Rosental sites. In addition, the Canton is evaluating - in the context of the „KlybeckPlus“ project - the purchase of a 50’000m2 lot in the Klybeck neighbourhood to strengthen the economic area even further.