2014 to bring decision about historic ArcelorMittal building
(CS/TJ) A decision about the future of the former Arbed building on Avenue de la Liberté in Luxembourg City should be made within the first half of 2014, a member of the ArcelorMittal management has said.
In an interview with RTL, Michel Wurth said that the company has already spoken to the City of Luxembourg, conservation authorities and architects.
However, no final decision has been made and ArcelorMittal could still end up not selling the building at all.
One option on the table is to convert the building into a hotel, possibly including several shops.
ArcelorMittal gave up the building last year as a cost-cutting measure. It has since been standing vacant.
The move was criticised by unions who said that it represents a loss of identity for the local steel industry. The building was designed as Arbed's headquarter, the country's steel producer before a 2002 merger created Arcelor, which later became ArcelorMittal.
Completed in 1922, the building is a major Luxembourg City landmark facing the Place des Martyrs, better known as the “Rousegaertchen”.
A widely supported decision to turn the building into a national monument is currently pending approval at the Culture Ministry.
Despite calls for the state to buy the building to preserve its future, the CSV-LSAP government commented earlier this year that it has no intention of making such a purchase, leaving the building in private hands.