A charging station for e-cars where a car is being charged.

Sustainable buildings and sustainable mobility

The market for electric vehicles is evolving rapidly. As the number of new registrations increases worldwide, so too does the demand for charging points. The EU’s mobility transformation programme prioritises electric mobility, paving the way to major changes in the automotive industry and calling on the real estate sector to take action. As a result, building users are expected to increasingly demand charging options for their vehicles. Charging points in or on a building will therefore increasingly influence rental decisions going forward.

Deka Immobilien pursues an end-to-end approach

Deka Immobilien supports its tenants and the users of its buildings with a variety of initiatives and continues to gradually expand the necessary charging infrastructure in Germany and abroad. We pursue an end-to-end approach at our buildings in order to link potential sustainability measures in the property with each other in a manner that makes technological sense. This includes integrating a photovoltaic system to allow the building to generate its own electricity, using intelligent storage charging systems to offset peak loads in the power grid or carrying out overarching dynamic load management to enable the charging infrastructure to be controlled according to needs.

Today (as at December 2023), Deka Immobilien’s portfolio already includes around 2,500 charging points at some 100 locations worldwide. This corresponds to an expansion of around 800 charging stations compared to 2022.

 

We pursue an end-to-end approach in order to find the most economically and environmentally efficient charging solution so that properties can be operated in a manner that conserves resources and meets needs. Along with the roll-out and expansion of charging infrastructure, we also endeavour to use renewable energy sources, where possible, in combination with load management across the entire property.

Christian Bierenfeld Sustainability & Smart Building department

 

There are lots of reasons to expand the electromobility infrastructure in the real estate sector

The expansion of electromobility in the real estate sector shows that companies are facing the future and tackling the challenges posed by the transformation in mobility. Those who invest early in electromobility can position themselves as pioneers and benefit from the emerging trends and opportunities. To take full advantage of the transition in both the energy and mobility sectors, it is worthwhile installing a photovoltaic (PV) system on the roof of a property, for example, while also setting up charging stations for electric vehicles in employee or customer parking spaces so that the power generated by the PV system can be used to charge the vehicles. This provides 100% green electricity and ensures the efficient use of the resulting power.

View of the TOWER185 in Frankfurt

Refuelling at the TOWER185 office high-rise in Frankfurt – Germany’s largest electricity charging station

TOWER185 in Frankfurt’s Europaviertel district is an example of how tenants’ wishes and sustainable mobility can be optimally combined. In February 2022, Deka Immobilien connected Germany’s largest electric charging facility to the grid in the office tower’s underground car park.

Electric vehicles can be topped up with energy in their parking spaces during the time their owners spend in TOWER185. The building’s underground car park has 130 charging points offering up to 22 kilowatts of power. That equates to just under 25% of all the interior parking spaces at TOWER185. Vehicles receive 100% green electricity, and the common areas as well as the building’s systems are all operated using power from renewable sources.

Electric vehicle charging stations in the underground car park at TOWER185

130 electric vehicle charging stations in the underground car park at TOWER185 – exceptional user comfort thanks to numerous access systems.

In the office tower, long standing times enable a lower output per charging point. This allows more charging points to be installed overall, so that up to 130 users can be provided with a charging option at the same time. A fully dynamic load management system from the operator Chargemaker ensures that each vehicle is optimally charged. After registering directly with Chargemaker, users can easily take advantage of the charging points and pay by mobile phone, smartwatch, card or token. Going forward, plans are also in place to automate the allocation of spaces at the charging stations so as to optimally utilise the capacity provided by the infrastructure.

The creation of e-mobility services is an important component of the sustainability concept that Deka Immobilien is implementing as part of the strategic redevelopment of TOWER185. Another element of this philosophy is the resource-saving and energy-efficient operation of the building.

Our expansion of fast charging solutions while you shop

The demands of electric vehicle drivers on the duration of the charging process depend heavily on the location of the charging points. The fact that users normally stay for a much shorter time in a retail property than in an office building puts somewhat different requirements on the expansion of charging infrastructure. For example, high-power chargers with a much greater output are necessary to ensure sufficient charging of the battery during the vehicle owner’s visit.

Pilot project in Germany with EnBW

The first initiatives are set to get under way in the targeted expansion of charging infrastructure in the retail sector. In Germany, for example, we will initially install 32 electric charging points at six shopping centres and retail parks owned by Deka Immobilien under a pilot project with Energie Baden-Württemberg AG (EnBW).

Each property, which is home to a large number of shops, will receive at least four high-power chargers (HPCs) with a rate of up to 300 kilowatts. This capacity allows cars to be charged with enough energy for a range of around 400 kilometres within 20 minutes – an amount of time that fits perfectly with the length of a shopping trip. A total of 32 HPCs are due to be installed at Deka’s shopping centres and retail parks in partnership with EnBW.

 

By providing fast-charging infrastructure, we offer the customers of shopping centres and retail parks an additional service during their shopping trip and thus create a locational and competitive advantage for our tenants. Our partnership with EnBW brings us a further step forward in the nationwide expansion of our fast-charging stations throughout Germany.

Jessica Cwyk Strategic Tenant Manager
View of the underground parking garage with sign indicating e-charging facilities
View of the underground parking garage with sign indicating e-charging facilities

Energised shopping experience in Akropolis

At the Akropolis shopping centre in Kaunus, Lithuania, mobility and accessibility are a top priority. The focus is part of efforts to ensure ecological and economic sustainability. Public charging infrastructure has been sorely lacking in and around the city centre of Kaunas – until now, that is. Work to install the first 20 of a total of 40 planned charging stations began in May 2024. One of the main features of the new charging park is its size. In view of traffic flows, the popularity of the Akropolis Kaunas car park and the dynamic growth in the number of electric vehicles, however, the capacity of the charging stations is likely to be exhausted in the foreseeable future.

Planning for the second phase is already under way and envisages a further 20 charging stations. Once the second phase is completed in 2027, up to 80 electric cars will be able to be charged simultaneously at the Akropolis shopping centre, making it the largest charging park in the Baltic region. The total capacity of the stations already in operation is 1,500 kilowatts, with the majority of the capacity (1,200 kilowatts) provided by fast chargers. The facility is expected to reach a total capacity of over 3 megawatts in 2027.

 

Our Akropolis shopping centre is playing a pioneering role. With Eleport as the responsible partner, we have succeeded in creating an attractive service for citizens of Kaunus and shopping centre visitors alike.

Hendrik Höppner Asset Manager
View of the underground parking garage with sign indicating e-charging facilities
View of the underground parking garage with sign indicating e-charging facilities

Implementing the UN Sustainable Development Goals

Icon of the UN Sustainable Development Goal number 7. To the right of the number is written "Affordable and clean energy". Below that, a sun with a power button icon in white on a yellow background.

7 Affordable and clean energy

The use of electric vehicles helps promote renewable energies. Electric vehicles can be charged with electricity from renewable sources such as solar and wind, which contributes to reducing CO2 emissions and fighting climate change.

Icon of the UN Sustainable Development Goal number 9. To the right of the number is written "Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure". Below that, in white, are three cuboids stacked on top of each other against an orange background.

9 Industry, innovation and infrastructure

The introduction of electromobility requires charging infrastructure to be built, including charging stations and grids. This promotes the development of innovative technologies and infrastructures and creates new jobs in the areas of renewable energies, electric vehicle production and charging infrastructure.

Icon of UN Sustainable Development Goal number 11. To the right of the number is written "Sustainable Cities and Communities". Below it, various buildings in white outlines against an orange background.

11 Sustainable cities and communities

Electric vehicles reduce air pollution and noise in urban areas, since they do not cause any emissions and are relatively quiet.

Icon of the UN Sustainable Development Goal number 12. To the right of the number is written "Responsible consumption and production". Below it, an endless loop in white against a brown background.

12 Responsible consumption and production

Promoting electric vehicles and creating a corresponding charging infrastructure contributes to fostering sustainable consumption and production patterns. Electric vehicles are more energy-efficient and have a lower carbon footprint compared to vehicles with combustion engines.

Icon for UN Sustainable Development Goal number 13. To the right of the number is written "Climate action". Below is an eye with the globe as a pupil in white against a green background.

13 Climate action

The use of electric vehicles makes it possible to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and support efforts to fight climate change.