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Local News Summary of September, 9th

  • Police warn of total traffic chaos in Weil
  • Unemployment rate of Basel-Stadt rises and remains stable in Baselland
  • Shopping along empty display windows: The Freie Strasse is changing completely

Police warn of total traffic chaos in Weil

The police in Weil am Rhein on Thursday received several complaints about the traffic chaos which has been caused by a number of factors:

Since Tuesday, the A98 motorway between Eimeldingen/Dreieck Weil am Rhein and the B3 motorway at Bahnhof Weil am Rhein have been inaccessible to all traffic. As a result, all diversion routes are completely overburdened with traffic. In addition, the trans-shipment station in Weil am Rhein cannot deal with the large number of lorries which need to pass through customs. This increased traffic was caused by the closure of the Rheintalbahn train route near Karlsruhe/Rastatt, which prompted all lorry traffic to use the streets instead.

The traffic queues run from the trans-shipment station right to the B532 motorway. Because of this, normal car traffic coming from France cannot flow normally. However, on Friday, the situation improved. Heavy traffic had eased, and the organisational changes at the trans-shipment station also helped.

Nevertheless, the police want to advise all drivers to avoid or drive around this area for the moment. The situation is expected to continue until next Tuesday.


Unemployment rate of Basel-Stadt rises and remains stable in Baselland

The unemployment rate of both Basels developed differently in August 2017: While the number of unemployed people rose from 3,5 per cent to 3,7 per cent in Basel-Stadt, it remained at 2,8 per cent in Baselland. Nationwide, it remained at 3 per cent.

The number of people registered as unemployed increased in both Basels over the past month: In Basel-Stadt, it rose by 112 to 3,626 people, in Baselland by 19 to 4,170 people. Compared to August 2016, there were 39 less unemployed people in Basel-Stadt this August. In Baselland, a minus of 253 people was recorded.

There was also an increase in the number of registered jobseekers in the past month. In Basel-Stadt, their number increased by 72 to 5,373, in Baselland by 22 to 5,665, the state secretariat for economy (Seco) said on Friday. The number of registered available jobs rose by 28 to 167 in Basel-Stadt and by 5 to 220 jobs in Baselland.

Shopping along empty display windows: The Freie Strasse is changing completely

“Demise of stores” is no longer the catchphrase for Freie Strasse in Basel. It is rather an eternal construction site with no end in sight.

The mystery of former Musik Hug

The building at the address Freie Strasse 70 is standing empty again. The prominent house at the foot of Münsterberg is going through one change after another. The “Tally Weijl” pop-up store has fulfilled its purpose: at the end of September, the clothes store will return to its premises at Marktplatz. This clears the space for another successor. But who will it be? The house still belongs to the Hug family, yet they remain silent on the matter. Statement requests by barfi.ch have so far not been answered, and there are no other hints. But it is clear that the building’s retail space is large and its location is excellent.

Hip clothes, local radio

Regarding “Tally Weijl”: the bright and fashionable clothes store is going to have a new neighbour after the reconstruction at Marktplatz. Radio Basilisk will broadcast from above the store, radio manager Matthias Hagemann said. The move into the new studio had already been planned, but he added: “Moving is a bit more complex for us due to the installation of the new studio and because of IT, so it is going to take a little while longer.”

The never-ending reconstruction of Radio Energy

A second local radio is set to move to Freie Strasse in the future: Radio Energy Basel, which is located at Unternehmen Mitte. The radio station has been planning its move to the shopping mile for ages. Yet the date remains more than open: “Unfortunately, we are experiencing delays in the reconstruction. But we plan to stay on track with moving Energy Basel to Freie Strasse and broadcasting from there,” chief radio officer, Roger Spillmann, told barfi.ch.

Joe and the Juice: The eternal advertising poster

Ads have been announcing the coming of Basel’s new juice bar for months. The concept of “Joe and the Juice” was once described as “the hottest juice bar in the world” by the “Blick am Abend” newspaper. There are already two juice shops in Lucerne and in Zurich. In Basel, there is still nobody who claims to know how the planned local juice bar is progressing. “Joe and the Juice” refer reporters to the real estate agency, CBRE, but they know nothing either: they answered the last telephone call with “I will have to check up on that myself.”

Mango moves and leaves a wasteland behind

“United Colors of Benetton” left Basel more than two years ago. In its place, Spanish clothes store “Mango” moved in for a while, which had previously been located across the street. The empty retail space is currently undergoing reconstruction. According to media reports, a men’s accessories shop is going to move in there. But nothing specific has been announced yet. The opening date is still uncertain.

Spira left too, but new tenants are in sight

Long-standing Basel shop “Spira” fought for its survival for a long time. The manufacture store for women first became a fashion gallery, then a “popstore” that hosted several smaller stores. Both projects could not prevail in the long term These days, the name has disappeared completely from Freie Strasse. The building is still owned and let by the family Spira. Successfully so, it seems: “The new tenant will present itself after the reconstruction in autumn, but we cannot provide any information about them,” François Spira informs. This building will not remain an empty space forever.

Orell Füssli will move too, and Vögele Shoes is already gone

The building complex, which houses the giant “Orell Füssli” bookstore, is undergoing renovations. The shop had to look for another home and found it at the former premises of “Vögele Shoes” – they are already gone and are now in Gerbergasse. It remains open who will present their wares there in the future, but the Spanish fashion label “Zara” is rumoured to be among the interested parties. It already has the furniture store “Zara Home” in a nearby building.

Chains instead of shops

People who regularly go shopping in Freie Strasse were often caught by surprise over the past few years: all of a sudden, a shop was gone and left behind an empty space. Or a new name had suddenly replaced an old favourite. It is apparent that Basel’s premium shopping mile is becoming increasingly dominated by international chains. Only they can still afford the high rents.