THE NETHERLANDS (News release) -- Sappi Maastricht and the Belvédère Wijkontwikkelingsmaatschappij (Neighborhood Development Company, WOM) of the Municipality of Maastricht, the Netherlands, have signed an agreement that will finalize the sale of the southwestern part of the Maastricht paper mill site to the WOM.
Sappi Maastricht, specialize in making coated graphical paper and have been manufacturing on the Maas site in Maastricht for 170 years. Due to the worldwide trend for digitization within communications, the market for graphic paper is shrinking. In order to survive in this shrinking market and to guarantee continuity and employment, Sappi Maastricht started three years ago with the transition into luxury packaging board. This activity mainly takes place on the north side of the company site. The southwestern part is therefore less intensively used and was eligible for sale to the WOM.
The purchase of the southwestern part of the Sappi site offers the municipality of Maastricht the opportunity to stretch the city center to the north and to further build on the Sphinxkwartier. Councilor Gert-Jan Krabbendam (Urban Development and WOM shareholder): "With this purchase we can fulfill the long-cherished wish of extending the Maasboulevard. By continuing the road around the Timmerfabriek, the Bassin bridge and Boschstraat will become more accessible. In this way we invest in the quality of life and attractiveness of the Sphinxkwartier."
Sappi will relocate its activities currently taking place on the sold land to the remaining Sappi site and will also undertake new construction. They estimate that they will take approximately two years to apply for the necessary permits, the internal relocations and preparations for the delivery of the sold sites and buildings.
During this time, the WOM is making preparations for the construction of the road, the housing to be built and completion of the necessary spatial procedures. The basic principle is to coordinate both schedules as closely as possible with each other. The aim is to be able to construct the new road after about two years in combination with the construction of the tram. The housing construction is expected to take place in 2025/2026, following the construction of the road.