|This article may be expanded with text translated from the corresponding article in the German Wikipedia. (April 2012)|
|Quarter of Hamburg|
|Elbe Philharmonic Hall under construction|
|Time zone||CET/CEST (UTC+1/+2)|
HafenCity Hamburg is a project of city-planning where the old port warehouses of Hamburg are being replaced with offices, hotels, shops, official buildings, and residential areas. The project is the largest rebuilding project in Europe in scope of landmass (approximately 2,2 km²). The area of the HafenCity used to be part of the free port, but with the decreased economic importance of free ports in an era of European Union free trade, large container ships and increased border security, the Hamburg free port was reduced in size, removing the current HafenCity area from its restrictions. When completely developed, it will be home to about 12,000 people and the workplace of 40,000 people mostly in office complexes. The prospect for completion is not very clear, but will probably be around 2020-2030.
On March 1, 2008, HafenCity was declared to be a separate district through the Law Concerning the Spatial Division of the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg (Gesetz über die räumliche Gliederung der Freien und Hansestadt Hamburg) - RäumGlG. It is composed of the former harbor of Großen Grasbrooks as well as the warehouse district on the islands of Kehrwieder and Wandrahm. Together, this borders the districts of Altstadt, Rothenburgsort, and the former district of Klostertor. The exact border path of both parts of the new district were declared on February 20, 2007 through a decree of the Senate. Five years before, on January 1, 2003, the area was removed from the duty-free zone of Hamburg to allow construction of housing and associated infrastructure.
Because of the new division, the Warehouse District (Speicherstadt) now belongs to the administrative region of the northern part of HafenCity instead of part of the Altstadt. However, the term HafenCity is primarily used to refer to the area of city development, whereas Speicherstadt is seen as a separate quarter.
The land of the former island of Grasbrook, upon which the HafenCity is built, lay until the beginning of the 19th century outside of the city gates. The city fortification used to run along what is now the street of Am Sandtorkai. The residential areas of Kehrwieder and Wandrahm were inside the walls, in the area of the current HafenCity. Outside the city walls, the boggy areas were used as meadows, and the western end of Große Grasbrook was used a place for executions, including those of pirates Klaus Störtebeker and the Victual Brothers. In the 18th and early 19th centuries, shipyards and port business were opened here. In 1844, the first gasworks in Hamburg were built in the northern part of the island.
When the capacity of the Binnen- and Niederhafen ports became full at the end of the 19th century, the city walls were demolished and the area of Grasbrook was used to extend the harbor area. In 1868, the first artificial dock was constructed at Sandtorhafen, and in 1881, the Grasbrookhafen was added. The Strandhafen was built directly on the Norderelbe, the Magdeburger Hafen, Brooktorhafen, and Ericusgraben were made to connect to the Oberhafen, and finally, the Baakenhafen was built with a rail connection to the Hamburg Elbbrücken bridges and the Kirchenpauerhafen with anchorage on the Elbe. Until 1886, the entire island was built up with docks and port installations. In 1872, the Hamburg Hannoverscher train station was constructed on Lohseplatz east of the Magdeburger Hafen. The Kehrwieder and Wandrahm residential quarters were demolisehd in 1883 to allow construction of the customs and duty-free zone of the Port of Hamburg, displacing around 20,000 residents. In 1888, the Warehouse District (Speicherstadt) could then be built in this area. Kaispeicher B was built in 1878 and the administration building of the old port authority (Altes Hafenamt) was built in 1885 at the Magdeburger Hafen. Around the start of the 20th century, the first heated fruit storehouses were constructed, and in 1928, a refrigerated herring warehouse by Fritz Schumacher was built.
The city of Hamburg has been building a new concert hall on top of an old warehouse since 2007, to be called the Elbe Philharmonic Hall. The project was supposed to be a new landmark for the city, but has been plagued by vast cost overruns and is currently about six years behind schedule. It is scheduled to be opened by 2016/2017. 
The area is currently home to the German headquarters of both Kühne & Nagel, an international shipping conglomerate, The Spiegel Group new headquarters on the Ericusspitze and Unilever. Greenpeace is expected to open its new headquarters in Hafencity by 2011. The Hamburg-America Center opened its doors in 2009.
- Gesetz über die räumliche Gliederung der Freien und Hansestadt Hamburg (RäumGiG)
- List of the Consular corps, the trade missions, cultural institutes and international institutes in the Free and Hanseatic city of Hamburg, Senate of the Free and Hanseatic city of Hamburg, Chancellery of the Senate (April 2008)
- "Infrastructure". HafenCity Hamburg GmbH. Retrieved 2009-08-26.
- Act of the areal organisation, July 6, 2006 Gesetz über die räumliche Gliederung der Freien und Hansestadt Hamburg (RäumGiG) (German)
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- HafenCity (English selectable)