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Workshop sheds light on the future of North Friesland in the wake of the Northvolt settlement

“The Northvolt effect: settlement prospects and effects for North Friesland” – this was the title of a workshop organized by the North Friesland Economic Development Agency on 22 February 2024 in the Husum district hall. Almost 30 representatives from the North Frisian towns, offices and municipalities, the district of North Frisia, the Flensburg Chamber of Industry and Commerce and the regional planning department took part.

The Northvolt effect

In his welcoming address, District Administrator Florian Lorenzen emphasized the importance of the joint efforts: “We have an extraordinary opportunity to position the district of North Friesland even better for the future. We want to look ahead and shape this process with courage and consensus. From the local authority to the district administration to regional planning, everyone is now called upon to get the best out of North Friesland.”

Representatives from Northvolt on site in person

Arne Claussen from Northvolt presented the Swedish battery manufacturer’s relocation strategy and gave an outlook on what lies ahead for the entire west coast and North Friesland. Fabian Böttcher from the CIMA Institute for Regional Economics presented the regional economic effects of the Northvolt settlement on the region as part of a major study. Dirk Burmeister from the Heide Region Development Agency provided valuable insights into the planning aspects of settling in the Heide region and explained what North Friesland can learn from this. The participants discussed various challenges and opportunities in the areas of housing, social infrastructure such as kindergartens and schools as well as commercial space. Planning necessities, interfaces, coordination requirements and the next steps were also discussed.

Economic development agency and district see great opportunity for the region

Dr. Matthias Hüppauff, Managing Director of Wirtschaftsförderung Nordfriesland, made the following points in his speech

moderation: “This is a huge opportunity for us. The extent to which we at Northvolt

North Friesland will greatly depend on how our region develops over the next few years.

and actively shape the process. We therefore have it in our hands.” There will be a certain

ramp-up by 2030, explains Hüppauff. “Northvolt doesn’t happen overnight. We can now

adjust to it. Nevertheless, we must not lose any time and must move swiftly into the

municipalities must set the course and start planning in the areas of commercial space, housing and social infrastructure,” says Hüppauff. Solutions should primarily be sought together. “Particularly when it comes to commercial space development, significant areas can almost only be developed on an inter-municipal basis. However, for this to be possible, there is an urgent need to discuss how restrictively the state planning instruments are interpreted,” Hüppauff makes clear.

District Administrator draws a positive conclusion from the event

Florian Lorenzen summarized that the event had impressively demonstrated that the success of the upcoming developments is based on the cooperation of all stakeholders. After numerous coordination meetings last year, the workshop marks the second step in the process. “North Friesland faces the challenge of using this great opportunity to sustainably strengthen the region and make it fit for the future. In the coming weeks and months, our business development department will work closely with all those involved to translate the identified needs and potential into concrete measures,” emphasized the district administrator.
Dr Jerome Stuck, Head of Settlement and Commercial Space Management at the North Friesland Economic Development Agency, emphasized the importance of the workshop for future development afterwards: “This event was crucial in order to identify where our potential lies, what coordination needs to take place and what the next steps need to be. Coupled with the positive mindset at all levels that the district administrator mentioned at the beginning, we now have a unique opportunity to develop North Friesland further together.”