Düsseldorf's wholesale flower market (BGM) has been an important hub for flowers and plants in the region for 80 years. With the new building, the market will be modernized to offer retailers and customers a better shopping experience. As part of the city of Düsseldorf's initiative to become climate-neutral, BGM's new hall will also be designed accordingly.
View of the new flower wholesale market
"We want to make our contribution to this. We are trying to design and present the sales and hall operations in the new hall in a climate-neutral way, and this will also succeed as best we can," says Jörg Breitenfeld, Managing Director of BGM Düsseldorf eG. To operate the hall and the cold stores and supply them with electricity, it will be equipped with a combined heat and power plant and a photovoltaic system.
The new wholesale flower market is a new building. However, the remains of a hall worthy of preservation of the municipal fruit & vegetable wholesale market will be included in the new construction of the wholesale flower market. However, the old parts of the building are not listed buildings, but this happens in the sense of sustainable construction. Although, the sales area will be 20 percent smaller. Instead of 10,000 sqm of sales area, this will therefore only be around 7,800 sqm. The number of retailers at BGM will nevertheless remain about the same. "We will have 2-3 outgoing horticultural businesses, which stop due to retirement. But in return, the next retailers are already in the line to take over the spaces," says Breitenfeld.
Long planning phase
The plan to build a new flower hall has been on the table for several years. "We plan to invest in the mid-single-digit million range, which we will largely provide from our own funds. That's a budget we have to stick to, of course," Breitenfeld explains. "We're basically doing this on a private-sector basis. There is a fixed budget that the board has passed and what the members have raised. Inside this budget, we must remain accordingly, and we will also manage that, and we will just build exactly with that money," says Breitenfeld.
Construction of the new hall is scheduled to begin on July 1st this year. "We then have a very tight window of circa 11 months in which we would like to have the new flower hall completed and then move." Breitenfeld does not fear supply bottlenecks for building materials during the construction project. "Since we've been in the planning phase for many years, we were able to place orders accordingly several months ago."
Right: Entrance to the old flower hall
"Metro AG is on our neck because all the things that happen here are interrelated. Metro AG will be clearing its current Cash & Carry market location in Düsseldorf because that is where the so-called Metro Campus is to be built. About 1,500 residential units will be erected there, and they can also only be built once we have finished our construction when our hall has been demolished when Metro AG itself has rebuilt and moved."
Not competition, but synergy
Metro AG will build a new cash & carry market on the current BGM site. This means that another wholesale company will then be on the same site. The new BGM will remain on the Ulmenstrasse site. The fruit and vegetable wholesale market has not yet received a commitment from the city of Düsseldorf for a new wholesale market hall. "I'm confident that a solution can be found," says Breitenfeld, "the site we're at now on Ulmenstrasse is a very special location. The wholesale market itself has been here for almost a hundred years. This is an old wholesale location, and the wholesale flower market will remain here. So it makes perfect sense, especially for the traders, that you can drive to Ulmenstrasse, that you can buy flowers here, that you can buy fresh fruit and vegetables here from the fruit and vegetable traders, or that you can buy hard goods from Metro AG - that's a wonderful idea. And we really welcome the fact that Metro AG is also coming here. We don't see them as competitors at all, but we really see this as additional mutual synergy effects that we can all benefit from."
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