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Frankfurt’s new district in the northwest

Between the skyline and the Taunus hills – affordable housing in a well-developed district all of its own

Preparatory studies
District: Local district:
7, 8
Size of area:
Zirka 190 ha
Project management:

Mr. Antonius Schulze Mönking
Telefon: +49 (0)69 212 36107
Telefax: +49 (0)69 212 30731

Ms. Sabine Guttmann
Telefon: +49 (0)69 212 34351
Telefax: +49 (0)69 212 30731

Project description

Beyond the districts of Nordweststadt and Praunheim, and to the west of the A5 interstate, the new district in the northwest of Frankfurt will see one or several urban quarters developed catering to 25,000 to 30,000 inhabitants. The idea is to meet the growing demand for housing in the medium to long term and in this way make certain that future Generations will also be able to live in Frankfurt, or indeed move to the city.

The main objective of the urban planning is, through affordable housing, to create homes for people of different ages and with different financial resources. The ratio of subsidized residences will be at least 30 percent of the total. To ensure that a diverse range of forms of housing is available, groups of developers and cooperatives will also be involved. Moreover, parks, plazas, schools, nurseries shops, sport and leisure time facilities will make the quarter a pleasant environment to live in.

The A5 interstate bisects the area in question and causes noise pollution. Both impacts must be countered by adopting appropriate planning means. Noise protection and green bridges, also as partial covering of the interstate, are topics to be investigated.
Plans for the Regionaltangente West (RTW), a new LRT line in the west of Frankfurt, the existing LRT line to Friedrichsdorf (S5), and the possibility of extending the existing U6 subway line beyond the Praunheim / Heerstrasse stop to the new district all provide an opportunity to prioritize public transport strongly over private cars from the outset, and to test new mobility concepts.

More informations

Starting point – Objectives

Starting point

The Frankfurt housing market is still characterized by a clear prevailing shortage. Almost all market segments report a strong demand for accommodation – and the need for it. The potential afforded by converting existing properties and increasing densities no longer
suffices to meet the needs. Major new developments such as the Riedberg and Europaviertel districts are due for completion in the foreseeable future.
In this context, it has become imperative to develop a new district on the city limits, beyond existing built-up areas. The area for this identified in the northwest of Frankfurt offers enormous potential for the creation of a new district, which can be linked up to the local
public transport system at relatively little cost.
To the east of the interstate, some areas bordering on Niederursel und Praunheim are already entered as residential and commercial areas in the in the Regional Preparatory Land Use Plan (RegFNP).


Housing in residential areas needs to be built as quickly as possible complete with all the requisite infrastructure. It is crucial that the neighboring municipalities, in particular Oberursel and Steinbach, be closely involved in evolving the ideas for the new development and be consulted in this regard. Important objectives for the development of the new district are:

  • 8,000 - 12,000 residences for a maximum of 30,000 inhabitants,
  • the creation of district quarters with a mixture of cooperative and municipal housing, with a mix of privately-owned and prices homes and 30 % subsidized housing,
  • integration in the regional green and settlement structure and
  • green boundaries between existing quarters.


Blick nach Westen über den Untersuchungsraum, © Stadtplanungsamt Stadt Frankfurt am Main

The area will be developed on the basis of an urban development measure in accordance with section 165 BauGB, which in addition to the swift development of the area offers, among others, the following advantages:

  • the social infrastructure, e.g., schools and nurseries, will be built parallel to the settlement,
  • building plots will be sold to (project) developers on condition that construction work is completed swiftly,
  • the price of the plots will be determined by the evaluation team and
  • speculative investments with plots will be prevented.

Before any urban development measure is conducted, it is important to first establish ist necessity and feasibility.
You will find further information under Preparatory Studies.

Preparatory studies

Preparatory studies

The City of Frankfurt/Main is endeavoring to develop the new district by means of the instrument of an “Urban Development Measure” as envisaged by section 165 ff of the German Town and Country Planning Code (BauGB). The urban development measure presupposes that the swift, uniform development of a particular area is imperative. Prior to the area for development being defined by a development by-law, the municipality must conduct preparatory studies to prove that the criteria justifying the development measure are fulfilled.

Preparatory studies

  • expert basic evaluation
  • willingness of the owners to cooperate
  • urban development concept and master plan
  • Rough estimation of costs and financing needs

Report on the result of the preparatory studies

In the preparatory studies for the new district, in particular the expert basic evaluations must be examined. Moreover, they also investigate how willing those affected (owners, tenants and leaseholders and other affected persons) are to cooperate. Measuring approximately 550 hectares, the area to be studied is considerably larger than the land that will later actually be developed. On the basis of initial preliminary sketches, we can assume that the gross construction area will measure approximately 190 hectares. Apart from the construction plots, this also includes pathways, roads and plazas, the social infrastructure, and areas of greenery in the residential area.
On December 14, 2017 the City Council passed a resolution that the preparatory studies be conducted.
The findings of the studies will be compiled in a single report. This will serve as the basis for decision-making on the project’s feasibility and the extent of the area of the urban development measure.

Legal zoning planning

As part of the preparatory studies, the status of binding planning regulations, i.e., of legally binding legal zoning plans and those currently being drawn up, will be examined. With regard to the section west of the A5 interstate there are no legally binding legal zoning plans, nor are any being drawn up.
As regards the section east of the A5 interstate there are several legally binding legal zoning plans, which by defining specific areas as greened zones and recreational zones, sports grounds, sports areas, public greened zones rule out these being developed for housing. As regards the area west of the Nordweststadt district a resolution was passed in 2014 for the legal zoning plan no. 906- West of Nordweststadt to be drawn up. The objective of the legal zoning plan is “… to enable different forms of housing for the various groups of the population” according to the presentation to the Municipal Authorities of the resolution to draw up legal zoning plan no. 906).
In Praunheim, the draft of legal zoning plan no. 696 – Commercial Area North of Heerstrasse – Section 2 – will now be advanced with the aim of a mixed urban development for commerce and housing; it will then be integrated into the overall planning for the new Frankfurt - Northwest construction area.
You can view further information on current planning regulations in the planAS Information System.

Downloads, an overview


Presentation by Mike Josef, the Head of the Department of Planning of the City of Frankfurt/Main, 
outlining the planning ideas for the new district on August 23, 2017 in the Town Hall in Oberursel

Presentation by Mike Josef, the Head of the Department of Planning of the City of Frankfurt/Main, 
outlining the planning ideas for the new district on September 27, 2017 in the Titus Forum, Nordweststadt

Presentation by Mike Josef, the Head of the Department of Planning of the City of Frankfurt/Main, 
outlining the planning ideas for the new district on November 28, 2017 to the construction committee of the Town of Steinbach.

Presentation by Mike Josef, the Head of the Department of Planning of the City of Frankfurt/Main, 
outlining the planning ideas for the new district on January 24, 2018 to the construction and enviroment committee of the Town of Eschborn.

Presentation by Mike Josef, the Head of the Department of Planning of the City of Frankfurt/Main, 
outlining the planning ideas for the new district on May 3, 2018 in the Town House in Niederhöchststadt

Policy position

Questions and answers

  • Data and facts

  • Will the entire 550 hectares be developed?

    No, the area measuring approx. 550 hectares is the land being investigated. Around 190 hectares of it will be developed and will include roads, parks, schools and childcare centers.

  • Urban development

  • What is an urban development measure (UDM)?

    Urban development measures are urban development projects in clearly defined development areas in line with sections 165 ff. of the German Building Code. An urban development measure must be implemented swiftly and uniformly. Unlike the standard development of land for construction, no proposals are drawn up and instead integrated development takes place. A prerequisite for an urban development measure is proof that the urban development objective cannot be achieved with other urban development tools. Another significant difference from the classic development of land for construction is the obligation on the part of the municipality to acquire the plots of land in the development area at their initial asset value prior to being earmarked for development. Furthermore, the municipality is obliged to subsequently sell the plots of land subject to a construction obligation. The development facilities and the social infrastructure (schools, childcare centers, etc.) are financed from the difference between the purchase price of the undeveloped plots of land and the selling price of the building plots.

  • Living

  • Who will live in the new district?

    The aim of the urban planning is to create new homes for people of different ages and in different living situations by providing affordable housing.

  • How high will the proportion of subsidized housing be?

    The ratio of subsidized housing to the total housing stock will be at least 30 percent. Groups of developers and cooperatives will also be considered so that a wide range of different living formats will evolve.

  • Is this going to be a satellite town?

    No, the City of Frankfurt will make certain that all the requirements future residents have of a proper modern district are met:
    A range of diverse forms of living in different types of housing
    Private open spaces which by virtue of being protected areas on the inside of blocks enable, for example, meetings with immediate neighbors
    Stores within walking distance
    Provision of doctors, bars, restaurants, and other service providers
    Wide range of mobility with a focus on public transport, pedestrians, and cyclists
    A broad range of childcare places from crèche to nursery, elementary schools and a secondary school
    A wide range of sports and leisure time facilities which encourage diverse club activities
    Religious facilities
    Well designed, clearly defined public spaces that enable residents to meet on lively plazas but also withdraw to quiet areas of greenery
    Jobs in the mixed usage and commercial areas

  • When can I buy or rent an apartment?

    Inasmuch as much as on the back of a positive result with regard to the preparatory studies, City Council decides in favor of a development measure, the first apartments will probably be able to be acquired as of 2025. There are no waiting lists for the purchase of plots of land or apartments.

  • Environment and climate

  • In what way will the issue of the climate be taken into consideration?

    At the moment the land being investigated is to a large extent a location where cold air arises.
    The preparatory studies include a climatic study of the land in question and the surrounding area. This will involve an analysis of the current situation, and the impact of construction work on the generation and transport of cold air and on air circulation.
    Possible optimization measures include keeping cold air corridors (valleys and brooks) well clear of obstruction, flow-optimized positioning of buildings, and roof and facade greening.

  • What will happen to the drinking water wells on Heerstrasse?

    The Praunheim II water works’ drinking water wells will remain in operation in the future, too. The idea of shutting down the water works, which was mooted a few years ago, has been abandoned. You will find more detailed information about the situation with regard to water supply in this flyer published by Arbeitsgemeinschaft Wasserversorgung Rhein-Main
    Situation Analysis with Regard to Water Supply in the Rhine-Main Region
    and in the detailed report:
    Updated Situation Analysis with Regard to Water Supply in the Rhine-Main Region - July 2016

  • What approach will be taken to the power lines?

    There are several power lines of regional and national importance running through the area in question. As a matter of principle, the functionality of these must be preserved. The preparatory studies will determine what opportunities there are to relocate the lines both horizontally and vertically (underground cabling) or to reorganize them. How to deal with the required distances of 200 meters or 400 meters from residential buildings will also be clarified in the course of further proceedings.

  • Agriculture

  • What will happen to agriculture?

    The owners as well as tenants of land used for agricultural purposes will be affected by new building land and the land that will then be offered in compensation.
    The preparatory studies will explore the extent to which such persons will be affected, and together with the farmers possible solutions will be elaborated on how to take the possible consequences into consideration in an appropriate manner.

  • What measures will be taken as compensation?

    Inasmuch as construction work involves interventions in the countryside and natural surroundings, on the basis of current legislation the extent to which these interventions can be avoided or minimized must be examined. Should this not be possible, compensation in line with conservation law is necessary. Primarily, provisions should be made for compensation in the development area in question, for example through areas of parkland or by planting woods. Should this not be possible either, compensation land must be found elsewhere.

  • Mobility

  • How will the new district be accessed?

    Access to the new district from elsewhere can only be via the existing road network in the districts and neighboring municipalities abutting the area in question. In this context the capacity of the existing road network must be examined in detail in order to rule out congestion as far as possible even at this stage. Particular attention will be paid to a good and efficient public transport system with sensible connections to the one already in place so as to keep motorized private transport as low as possible. An extensive network of cycle paths will also help avoid journeys by motorized private transport.

  • What will happen to the Praunheim by-pass?

    The resolutions adopted by the City Council with regard to the Praunheim by-pass are still in place. In future its northeastern section will also serve as access to the new district and will no longer not be built up.

  • Will the district be car-free?

    A totally car-free district is hardly conceivable in this location on the city limits.
    However, as already mentioned, the level of motorized private transport can be reduced through a good public transport system and a well thought through cycling infrastructure.

  • What will the response be to the fragmentation caused by the A5 interstate?

    In 2019, as part of the preparatory studies, an urban development ideas competition will be staged with the intention of producing solutions in particular to this issue.

  • How will the noise from the A5 interstate be dealt with?

    Because of the high volume of traffic, which given the planned widening is set to increase, the A5 interstate causes a lot of noise.
    As part of the preparatory studies an expert opinion on noise will be complied, which on the basis of the volume of traffic forecast will identify the areas affected and examine possible noise protection measures.

  • Information and involvement

  • How can I get involved?

    As part of the agreed preparatory studies the city will approach the landowners and tenants in the area in question with a view to determining the extent to which they are willing to get involved in the proceedings. As a rule, if the plot of land is in the developed area of Niederursel, Praunheim or Nordweststadt, no further development of it should be expected. In this case discussions with the owner are superfluous.
    You can make suggestions and ask questions at any time using the contact form on the website. Further information events for citizens will be held during the course of the preparatory studies.

  • Bei weiteren Fragen freuen uns wir Ihnen weiterzuhelfen. Kontaktieren Sie einfach die untenstehenden Ansprechpartner.

Mr. Antonius Schulze Mönking

Telephone: +49 (0)69 212 36107
Fax: +49 (0)69 212 30731

Ms. Sabine Guttmann

Telephone: +49 (0)69 212 34351
Fax: +49 (0)69 212 30731