L'histoire du Kirchberg
History of the Kirchberg
The Kirchberg Plateau possesses exceptional land reserves of some 365 hectares in a single block.
In the early 1950s, with the creation of the European Coal and Steel Community, Luxembourg became the provisional site of several European Institutions, setting the seal on the future of the Kirchberg Plateau. So it was that the Fund for the Urbanisation and Development of the Kirchberg Plateau was brought into being 1961, with the aim to develop a new part of the city after the Government had purchased the territory of the Kirchberg Plateau for the installation of the European Institutions.
The Fund's first task was the 1963 construction of the Grande-Duchesse Charlotte Bridge, also called Red bridge to link the Kirchberg to the city centre. The Alcide De Gasperi Tower (Héichhaus), was commissioned by the Luxembourg government in 1966 to accommodate the Secretariat of the European Parliament. At a height of 22 storeys, it was the first tower building to be built in Luxembourg. Today, except the Publications Office of the European Union, all of the European Institutions in Luxembourg are based on the Kirchberg Plateau.
The demand from the rapidly expanding banking sector in the Grand Duchy for land suited to construction became particularly fierce during the1980s, and continued into the 1990s. A large number of Luxembourg and foreign banks thus set up their headquarters in the Plateau's new banking area of the Kiem District, and then in the neighbouring Grünewald District. Among these are architectural highlights like the HypoVereinsBank (by the architect Richard Meier), now hosting the University of Luxembourg and that of Deutsche Bank designed by the architect Gottfried Bohm.
So the Fund resolved in the early 1990s to undertake the densification of the urban development policy then favouring isolated buildings. The expressway was remodelled as an urban avenue: Avenue J. F. Kennedy, and the Kirchberg began its diversification, in order to encourage urban variety.