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Local News Summary of January, 6th

  • Basel biotechnology firm targeted for take-over pulls out of investors’ conference 
  • Basel index in December 2016 remains unchanged for the fourth time 
  • Traffic diversions due to renewal of Basel–Riehen Grenze intersection 

Basel biotechnology firm targeted for take-over pulls out of investors’ conference 

Basel biotechnology company Actelion, which is currently negotiating a takeover, has withdrawn from this year's J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference. 

A spokesperson for the company confirmed on Wednesday that the company had pulled out of the 35th annual conference but declined to give a reason. 

The annual investors’ conference, organised by the US bank J.P. Morgan, starts on Monday in San Francisco. It is an opportunity for all representatives of the health care sector to meet up. 

Actelion is currently in exclusive negotiations with Johnson & Johnson about a potential buy-out. According to insiders, the pharmaceutical and consumer products company from New Jersey is to take over the biggest biotech company in Europe for around 28 billion dollars. 

Basel index in December 2016 remains unchanged for the fourth time 

The prices of consumer goods in Basel remained stable in December. The Basel index for consumer prices remained unchanged compared to last November and remains at 100.2 points. Compared to December 2015 however the prices have risen by 0.2 per cent. 

According to the Office for Statistics Basel-Stadt, December’s index was mostly influenced by a rise in the cost of public transport, which increased by 1.1 per cent. Flight tickets also became more expensive. 

However the prices of food and non-alcoholic beverages went down by one per cent. In the second half of 2016 the Basel index has remained unchanged compared to the previous month. For the entirety of 2016 the average rate of inflation was -0.2 per cent. 

Nationwide the average rate of inflation was -0.4 per cent. In December the national index reached 100.0 points which means a minus by 0.1 per cent compared to November. There was no change compared to last December. 

Traffic diversions due to renewal of Basel–Riehen Grenze intersection 

The municipality of Riehen, BVB, and the power supplier IWB have announced that they are to renew the Basel–Riehen Grenze intersection. A joint statement issued on Thursday said the next phase is due to start next week. 

Between Tuesday, 10 January and the end of 2020, only one lane will be in use on certain sections of the Aeussere Baselstrasse. Transit traffic towards Lörrach will be mainly diverted along Zollfreistrasse. On Monday, 16 January, road works will start in Basel- and Lörracherstrasse. 

Road surface and tracks also to be renewed 

The road surface, tram tracks, and underground pipes and cables at the Basel (Eglisee)–Riehen Grenze intersection will be renewed in sections until the end of 2021. The works will take up part of the Auussere Baselstrasse which will be partially closed between 10 January and end of 2020. Access to side streets from Bettingerstrasse onwards will only be possible for deliveries, bicycles, and motorcycles. From Basel towards Riehen the traffic flow will remain the same. 

In 2018, the diversion towards Basel is expected to follow a route over Inzlingerstrasse, Schützengasse, and Eisenbahnweg. 

Start of works for a more attractive Lörracherstrasse 

Starting on 16 January, workers from the Office of Public Works (Tiefbauamt), the BVB, and IWB will renew Baselstrasse and Lörracherstrasse between Gartengasse and Riehen Grenze until the end of 2018. The last road surface will be laid by mid-2019. 

The work along Baselstrasse and Lörracherstrasse will give more space for pedestrians and cyclists. The pavements will be broader and in both directions there will be bicycle lanes. In addition, 62 new trees will be planted. Traffic coming from Germany in the future will make more use of the Zollfreistrasse, so the Office of Public Works can implement traffic calming measurements. At all public transport stops, passengers will have level access to the vehicles. 

Work in stages 

The works will be conducted in stages. The section from Inzlingerstrasse to Friedhofweg will be finished by the end of 2017, while the section between Friedhofweg and Riehen Grenze will be completed by the end of 2018. Between Gartengasse and Inzlingerstrasse, works on Baselstrasse will be conducted from January to the end of 2018.