EconomyOffices instead of the sports field, “that's an aberration!...

Offices instead of the sports field, “that’s an aberration! »For residents

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A private real estate project threatens the public sports ground in Neudorf. Strasbourg on March 31, 2021. – G. Varela / 20 Minutes

  • The sale of a sports field to a real estate developer who carries an office project was recorded during the last municipal council.
  • This small multisport field belonging to the city in the Neudorf district of Strasbourg is very popular with residents, young people, families and even some schools in the district.
  • The inhabitants, who do not want to see “one of the only breathing spaces” disappear in an already very urbanized area, have launched a petition and ask the ecological mayor of Strasbourg to abandon the real estate project.

Shocking slogans. “The greens, let our neighborhood breathe”, “Sports ground dismantled, residents reassembled”… No doubt, the many messages and banners hung all along the public multisport ground, located at the corner of avenue du Rhin and of the rue de Lièpvre in the Neudorf district of Strasbourg, testify to the lack of understanding of the inhabitants. And even anger since they learned that “their field”, that “where young people meet”, where “families come to spend a quiet time”, but also schools for certain PE lessons, will be sold by the city for an amount of 1.1 million euros to a real estate developer.

Anger which is expressed today also via an online petition which, in just one week, approaches its goal of 1,000 signatures …

A private real estate project threatens the public sports ground in Neudorf.  Strasbourg on March 31, 2021.
A private real estate project threatens the public sports ground in Neudorf. Strasbourg on March 31, 2021. – G. Varela / 20 Minutes

“A very used and frequented place”

Instead of part of this open-access multisport field, its grass plot and its small free car park with 14 spaces, a set of offices, a restaurant and a “shared amphitheater” should emerge.

This sales authorization was hotly debated and widely debated during the last city council. Denouncing an “inconsistent” measure, part of the opposition is today asking Mayor Jeanne Barseghian to give it up “before it is too late”.

A private real estate project threatens the public sports ground in Neudorf.  Strasbourg on March 31, 2021.
A private real estate project threatens the public sports ground in Neudorf. Strasbourg on March 31, 2021. – G. Varela / 20 Minutes

For many residents who “still cannot believe it”, this measure is also “unacceptable”. Jean Paul, an inhabitant of the district who returns from a jog in the park of the Citadel, does not take offense. Offices instead of a sports field, “that’s an aberration! Selling a sports field to a developer for offices and opening a restaurant that will probably be a franchise is even a double aberration. Because not only is it a place very frequented and used by young people, families, schools in the neighborhood, but also because it is already completely concrete in this area. There are no spaces to breathe. And all these young people who come to live in the new constructions, where are they going to go? Worries the sixty-year-old.

Noah, in his early twenties, basketball in hand, regularly comes to play on this court. If he does not necessarily appreciate this sale, he especially regrets the state of aging infrastructure. “It’s a bit abandoned, it’s not terrible,” explains the young man. But I like the place all the same, it would be better to arrange it. I can go to the Citadel Park, it’s not too far, continues the young man, but there are too many people. “For Adrien, it’s even sentimental:” I’ve been coming here since I was little, with friends, often even simply to chat and hit a few balls. “

“There are already enough offices in the city. Frankly, the town hall advocates living together, well-being. But it is not only to protect the small birds but also to take care of its inhabitants ”, denounces another local resident.

A private real estate project threatens the public sports ground in Neudorf.  Strasbourg on March 31, 2021.
A private real estate project threatens the public sports ground in Neudorf. Strasbourg on March 31, 2021. – G. Varela / 20 Minutes

For its part, the ecological majority justified its choice by recalling that the project was initiated under the former mandate and that it ultimately contributes, today and after long negotiations, to the fight against the artificialization of soils, stressing that this land is already artificial, in particular the parking lot. The city specifies that it also respects a fair balance between city and nature, an example of what new constructions should be. With a green roof, priority will be largely given to wood, local, with large openings on the public space. A green space will be preserved and a playground will be reconstituted. In the meantime, residents continue to sign the petition and “simply hope” for the abandonment of the project.

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