FedEx Express, a subsidiary of FedEx Corp., and Cologne Bonn Airport on Tuesday celebrated the topping out ceremony for the new Central and Eastern Europe hub for the world's largest express transportation company. At the celebration, the topping out wreath was raised into place before some 300 guests, which included Lutz Lienenkämper, the minister for construction and transport of the state of North Rhine-Westphalia, and Fritz Schramma, Lord Mayor of Cologne.
The Cologne hub is slated for completion in 2010 and will be FedEx's largest solar-powered gateway worldwide. Together, the airport and FedEx are investing approximately 140 million Euros in the hub. It is expected that FedEx will employ 450 persons at the new site. To date, the Central and Eastern Europe hub of FedEx Express has been based at Frankfurt Airport. "The relocation of the FedEx hub is more than just an important milestone in the development of Cologne Bonn Airport. It speaks to our ability to compete and strengthens North Rhine-Westphalia as a logistics
This further strengthens the position of Cologne Bonn Airport as a hub for international cargo traffic. The state government set the course for this development with its clear regulations regarding night flights. FedEx's decision not only continues existing jobs at Cologne Bonn Airport for a number of years, but also creates several more. I would like to thank the company for its confidence and trust in Cologne as a business center." "We are pleased that the construction of our hub is entering a key phase today. The move to Cologne will enable us to maintain our high level of service in Central and Eastern Europe and to extend the range of services offered," said Michael Mühlberger, vice president, Operations, Central and Eastern Europe, FedEx Express. "In addition, this project demonstrates our commitment to connect the world reliably, and in a responsible manner." "Today is a great day for Cologne Bonn Airport," said Michael Garvens, CEO of Flughafen Köln/Bonn GmbH. "With the topping out ceremony, we are ringing in the last stage of construction of the new FedEx hub.
This project is strategically important for the airport. The opening of the building next year will mark a turning point in the freight industry-when we take off together with our friends from FedEx." On a site with an area of approximately 50,000 square meters, FedEx and the airport are building new ramp, freight and sort facilities with a fully-automated sort system.
Also being constructed is a solar power system capable of producing about 1.3 gigawatt hours of electricity per year-equivalent to the annual consumption of more than 370 households. To this end, solar panels with a total area of 16,000 square meters will be installed on the roof of the building. The installation of the solar power system in Cologne is just one example of how FedEx is reducing its environmental footprint. The company is taking a wide-ranging approach, including vehicles, aircraft and packaging, in addition to its facilities. This approach is described in detail in the "FedEx 2008 Global Citizenship Report".
For more information, visit: blog.fedex.com.