PSR and Codic redevelop former Inofer site

PSR and Codic will jointly redevelop the former Inofer site, near the railway station of Mechelen. Both project developers will join forces and know-how to contribute with this large-scale reconversion project to the renovation of the railway station area in Mechelen. The needs of future generations in terms of living and working are the focus point of this project.

The multifunctional project combines 19,000 m² of office space and 4,000 m² of living space in a low-traffic and green environment. With the sustainable integration of the heritage building Socaré, this new city quarter will get a very distinctive identity.

The location at the renovated railway station of Mechelen is an extra asset for both future residents and office workers. This project offers considerable added value for the city of Mechelen, both on an economic and social level. 

The start of the works is planned for the first half of 2021.

In order to deliver this redevelopment project, the strengths of PSR in terms of the development and revitalisation of complex projects and brownfield sites and the know-how of its sister company Envisan, which is expert in the remediation and redevelopment of polluted sites, are combined together with Codic which is expert in office development and multifunctional projects.  

Johan Geeroms, Managing Director of PSR (member of Jan De Nul Group):
"This project is very important to us because it is a textbook example of the reallocation of vacant and undervalued sites, where we will redevelop this dilapidated industrial site, after its demolition and remediation, into a sustainable, multifunctional (housing, services and offices) urban development, while retaining the existing architectural heritage (the Socaré building) as a reminder of its rich history. This development offers PSR the opportunity to realise an innovative redevelopment project at a unique hotspot, given that it concerns both a railway station and a water-bound location. We are pleased to continue the productive and professional cooperation with the city of Mechelen for this project.”

Christophe Jacobs, General Manager of Codic Belgium:
"Our most recent experiences at Brussels Airport (with the "Gateway" and "PassPort" projects) have given us a better understanding of the wishes and current requirements of new office tenants. It is important to offer efficient solutions to the labour market. Making public transport as accessible as possible addresses the problem of ever-increasing traffic jams. An excellent work-life balance and the proximity of services to the city centre are also on their wish list. Our international experience with multifunctional urban development projects in Luxemburg, Paris and Budapest enables us to offer accurate expertise on the needs of cities." 

For this transaction, Codic was assisted by JLL and K-Law.

Reviving the railway station area

Up to 2013, this 11,000 m² site in between Postzegellaan, Geerdegemvaart and Guldendal, contained a press shop for non-ferrous metals. Before that, a malt-house and a rubber factory (Le Caoutchouc Récupéré) were located here. The site was abandoned when the last company using it went bankrupt. Since that time, it has been facing challenges such as underutilisation and neglect. The various industrial activities have left their marks in the soil so that the site needs to be remediated first before the redevelopment can be started. Envisan, the environmental division of Jan De Nul Group, is responsible for the remediation works at Inofer. By involving Envisan at an early stage in the redevelopment plans, an integrated approach to soil remediation and redevelopment allowed for the most cost effective solution. An overall environmental solution where Envisan relieves the developer. 

This underutilised site will make way for 12,000 m² of new and 7,000 m² of renovated office space, 2,500 m² of apartments and 1,500 m² of single-family dwellings. It will be a low-traffic and green living environment for residents and office users, with lots of integrated facilities such as a pub, a restaurant and a co-working area, which are also accessible to the surrounding neighbourhood. The project also includes a communal underground car park with 290 parking spaces.  

The revalorisation of the Inofer site will pay a valuable contribution to the renovation of the railway station area. To further improve the integration of this new city quarter in the railway station area, the access road along the Postzegellaan will be lowered to bring it on the same level as the project development area.

Architectural quality and integration of heritage

Architectural quality is key in this redevelopment project. This reveals itself in the contemporary and sustainable architecture, the high-end landscaping of the open green areas and the integration of the historical Socaré building. The industrial look & feel of the Socaré building has been preserved as a reference to the site’s history.  

The overall master plan for the project area has been drawn up by Sculp.IT Architects. The further realisation of the different buildings and functions rests with a team of complementary architects under the supervision of Jaspers-Eyers

For the office buildings, we are committed to achieve the BREEAM Very Good certification. The renovation of the Socaré building has been entrusted to Callebaut Architects, an established name in the renovation of heritage buildings.

The landscape architects of Avant Garden will design the open and green space. A free, attractive and pleasant flow of vulnerable road users is central to their design. The new quarter will have an array of interconnecting foot- and bicycle paths, vertical and horizontal green spaces, green roofs and lots of small lively squares.

About PSR

Jan De Nul Group is an active player on the project development market through its subsidiary PSR (Partner in Site Reconversion) since 1999. We focus on urban renovation projects and the reuse and (re)development of existing un-used or underutilised sites, often with an historical environmental pollution problem. This fits within a forward-looking vision on urban planning and project development. Our commitment when handling large-scale and smaller real estate projects: an optimum spatial integration of the project area in the immediate vicinity; architectural quality; focus on sustainable project development and stakeholder management. Thanks to the synergies within Jan De Nul Group with, a/o, the civil works and environment division, we can offer overall solutions through an integrated approach.

About Codic

Codic has been active as a highly committed real estate developer for 50 years. The group focuses on multifunctional developments in Europe: from office projects to shopping centres and housing. In each project, special attention is paid to the creation of a pleasant living and working environment. Codic's basic principles are a strong architectural identity, the quality of programming and materials, state-of-the-art technologies, high-quality landscaping and a commitment to sustainable development in every project. Perfectly in line with its working philosophy, Codic often integrates works of art in its developments. Codic applies its knowledge in various European countries: Belgium, France, the Grand Duchy of Luxemburg, Hungary, Spain and Romania.