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Parliamentary questions
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18 December 2018
P-006345-18
Question for written answer P-006345-18
to the Commission
Rule 130
Martin Schirdewan (GUE/NGL)

 Subject:  The Commission's review of the award procedure for the ‘Elbtower’ in Hamburg
 Answer in writing 

In their response of 11 December 2018 to Question E-005022/2018, the Commission stated that they were currently reviewing the planned construction of the ‘Elbtower’ high rise building in Hamburg with respect to the application of EU tender law. An Austrian investor was awarded the contract for the billion-euro project(1). A caveat to the contract was that it would require the approval of Hamburg citizens, in a vote which has yet to occur.

The Commission’s review concerns the question of whether Directive 2014/23/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 26 February 2014 on the award of concession contracts ought to have been taken into account.

Article 3 of the directive states that the design of the concession award procedure shall not be made with the intention of unduly disadvantaging certain economic operators.

In the case of the Elbtower, it is potentially the case that less well-financed economic operators were unduly disadvantaged by the imposition of particularly high and dissuasive demands placed on the formation of joint tenders. According to the city’s offer documents(2), joint tenders would only be acceptable if they could guarantee that they would ‘exceed the performance of an individual, high quality building contractor in the areas of planning and implementation management’ (see point 2.1.3)(3).

1. When should the Commission’s decision be expected by?

2. Does the Commission share the view that it would be advisable for the citizens of Hamburg to make their decision only after the Commission has concluded its review?

(1)https://www.abendblatt.de/hamburg/article213360845/Elbtower-Karstadt-Eigner-baut-das-hoechste-Gebaeude-Hamburgs.html
(2)https://www.hamburg.de/contentblob/11616966/ee38eedbcfcdfbf932d2e5007881f2f0/data/hafencity-16-grundstuecksangebot.pdf
(3)2.1.3: Planning and Implementation Management: The proven capability of the tenderer to plan, finance, build and bring to market such a high rise building is an essential factor when reviewing and evaluating the tender submitted. The tenderer must consist of experienced building contractors with demonstrable skills in implementing high rise buildings incorporating hotel and office space, together with architectural and engineering firms with significant experience in designing high-rise buildings. Joint tenders will only be accepted if they can guarantee that they will exceed the performance of an individual, high quality building contractor in the areas of planning and implementation management. If a joint venture is sought, it must set out its division of duties and specific capacity for planning and decision-making structures, as well as for financing and implementation.

Original language of question: DE 
Last updated: 7 January 2019Legal notice