In the Gare and Koenigshoffen districts, four new housing developments will be delivered in 2024 and 2025 on the axis separating the western Gare district of Koenigshoffen. The majority of homes are sold at above-market prices.
As you go up the rue de Wasselonne, building permits appear everywhere on the facades. Four new housing projects, among 53 projects in progress in Strasbourg according to SeLoger, are located on the axis connecting the Gare district to Koenigshoffen, passing through rue de Wasselonne, rue de Koenigshoffen and the avenue des Romains. The construction dynamism is not new: in 2016, the local urban plan set a target of 45,000 additional housing units in 15 years for the 33 municipalities of the Eurometropolis of Strasbourg, with an annual construction rate of 3,000.
Susan Monroe, a Gare resident for 30 years, worries: “Elected officials don’t give us much information about these facilities. With more people and jobs here, it’s going to be very fast.” To be assured:
“These are inconveniences that make improvements in the living environment. We use the built space to build new things, and this will refresh and allow other residents to enter these neighborhoods.”
On the facade of the former training center of the Compagnons du Devoir, at 23 rue de Wasselonne, a large plaque resembling the exhibition fair presents “New Art”, “New Luxurious Apartments”. In fact, out of the 125 planned housing units, 81 will be offered for sale by the Kaufmann & Broad Group, with prices ranging from 5,620 euros per square meter for a three-room apartment with parking, and up to 8,598 euros per square meter for five rooms. Apartment 111.6 m² with parking and a terrace. Those prices are much higher than the area prices, which are €4,547 per square meter including new and old housing, according to SeLoger. The promoter did not want to answer our questions about pricing and sales details that had already taken place.
Many real estate agents find these prices too high for the area, such as Solveen Dromson, from the estate agency of the same name located in the Gare area:
New home prices are almost always slightly higher than old home prices, by about 20-30%. This has increased with the spread of the Covid virus and the war in Ukraine, and the price of materials has increased. Energy standards are also more demanding. However, with these prices, and even if the services are of good quality, it is possible that within 10 years, buyers will not be able to resell their property at these prices. We don’t know if the Gare region will still have the same appeal in a few years. »
Student and social housing
In this building at 23 rue de Wasselonne, 44 apartments have been reserved by CDC Habitat for social housing. Since 2014, the Solidarity and Urban Renewal (SRU) Act requires that municipalities with more than 3,500 residents have 25% of social housing. Strasbourg currently has 30.93% of social housing, but Eurometropolis as a whole has only 16%, while it counts 23,000 applications for this housing in 2022.
A little further afield, at 2 rue de Wasselonne, the extension of the Compagnons du Devoir boarding school is still under construction. The training will be dedicated to the trainees, explained Cécile Simonin, Head of Development and Project Management at CDC Habitat, co-chair of the training project:
The aim of this operation is to help young companions to find housing by providing 55 housing units commensurate with their income. Providing social housing in these neighborhoods also means allowing social diversity. We are expecting a lease in August 2023. Once the internship is over, the guys will vacate their premises at 23 rue de Wasselonne to move into their new headquarters. »
When out of Gare, business will be changed soon
Following the liquidation in August 2020, the former East Hardy supermarket building, at the exit of the Jar neighborhood, was abandoned for several years. Jean-Sebastien Scharf, of the real estate company of the same name, acquired the land in 2017. Since then, work has not started, due to the lack of agreement with the city on the form of the project, according to the owner, who plans to hand over the building at the end of 2024.
A commercial space of 275 square meters will be built on the ground floor. The next two floors will be occupied by two corporate offices of 250 square meters each. For Jean-Sébastien Scharf, this is a positive reconfiguration of this area:
“The interesting thing is that there was a real question about the dynamism of the sector. We are at the entrance to the city, so the city is demanding architecture and animation in this developing area. We have developed a project that goes well with this busy neighborhood, to which trams have recently been added.”
In addition to these buildings, 48 housing units will be built, of which 14 are social housing units distributed throughout the building. The price of accommodation in direct join will range between 6,436 and 7,012 euros per square meter for a studio, around 5,700 euros per square meter for two, three and four rooms, all with a terrace, and two 5-room apartments at 3,632 euros per square meter without a terrace. “Reasonable price” given the dearth of new housing in Strasbourg, according to Jean-Sebastien Scharf, who considers new construction “extremely rare” in this region. C’est un peu moins cher que le « Nouvel Art », mais cela reste des tarifs plus élevés que ceux du quartier Gare et de Koenigshoffen, respectivement à 4382 euros et 2508 euros moyen au mètre carré logements neufs site compris et ancilons le Live.
Two residential dwellings in Koenigshoffen
A little off the Route de Romain, behind the site of the new Compagnons du Devoir training center, 11 apartment buildings are being built by promoters Pierres et Territoires de France Alsace and Bouygues Immobilier. The first “Le Forum” project will feature 104 housing units, of which 27 will be social housing units managed by Habitation Moderne. The second, “L’Inattendu” at 117a route des Romains, will offer about 116 homes to private ownership, 65 in social housing operated by Habitation Moderne, and 78 rent-free units with Habitation Moderne and CDC Habitat.
Pierre Uzen, deputy mayor in charge of public spaces and reference for the Königshofen region, explains the need for adaptation:
“The provision of social housing is really important historically in Koenigshofen. Today, it is private housing that allows the residents to be large enough to support the existing businesses. Then there will be the Compagnie de d’Ivoire students who will come to lunch and rest between classes. There must be life. in these suburbs so as not to become dormitories.”
In addition to social housing, it will be possible to access 16 housing units in the Pierres et Territoires marketed by Opidia, a modern housing project, through the Social Loan Acquisition of Rent (PSLA) scheme, which allows people whose income is below the resource cap Specific to the purchase of the new apartment after the rental period, taking advantage of some reduced costs at the time of purchase (VAT at 5.5%, exemption from property tax for 15 years).
Prices are higher than the current market
Housing prices will range between 3,940 euros and 4,118 euros per square metre, with only 9 plots left for sale according to Pierres et Territoires. For the Bouygues project, selling prices range from 3,925 euros per square meter to 5,330 for two, three and four rooms. Only 22 homes are still available in August 2022, evidence that these prices are “perfectly in line with market prices, otherwise they would not be sold”, according to Florence Houpt Schetzel, general manager of the Eastern region at Bouygues Immobilier.
According to the developers, sales in these neighborhoods are mainly for main residences, families and young people who want to become owners, but also for rentals. Pinel’s Law also facilitates this type of purchase in exchange for certain tax advantages.
These high prices are partly explained by “the increase in construction costs, as well as the scarcity of land in Eurometropolis,” according to May Claudine Lutz, president of the Chamber of Notaries in Bas-Rhin. In the first quarter of 2022, the Regional Directorate for Environment, Planning and Housing (DREAL) indicated that the average price per square meter for new apartments rose from 3,970 euros to 4,130 euros, an increase of 160 euros per square meter in one year. At the same time, the number of new apartments sold in the Eurometropolis of Strasbourg decreased by 11% compared to the first quarter of 2021.
“all inclusive” housing
Despite this trend, the neighborhood reference highlights new housing on the contrary more “inclusive”:
“You have to see this as a coherent whole, housing is going to comply with energy standards, while currently it is an inexpensive area because there is a lot of housing that is outdated. It is also suitable for elderly residents, where housing is adapted to their reduced mobility needs, which can, on the For example, letting them continue to live in the suburb. I call that neighborhood development in a balanced way”