The negotiations between Christiania and the state

On 1 June 2004, a broad majority in the Danish Parliament adopted Law no. 431 concerning amending the Christiania Law. The purpose of the change in the law was to make development in the Christiania area possible as a sustainable neighbourhood in Copenhagen in accordance with the planning, which is carried out for the area. As a part of this, restoration of the ramparts should take place and a change in ownership of the buildings and areas in the area should be completed.

On 15 June 2004, the responsibility for the Christiania area was transferred from the Danish Minister of Defence to the Danish Minister of Finance, who delegated the responsibility onto the Danish Building and Property Agency (at that time the Danish Agency for Palaces and Cultural Properties). In this manner, the agency also received the responsibility of implementing the amended Christiania Law.

Since 2004, Christiania and the state (via the Danish Building and Property Agency) have been negotiating about the implementation of the Christiania Law. In the following you can get an overview of the milestones in the process, as well as download the associated documents.

March 2004: The Christiania Committee prepares the report "The Future of the Christiania Area - Master Plan and Action Plan". The report provided the background for the adoption of Law no. 431 concerning amending the Christiania Law. It was adopted on 1 June 2004 and went into force on 14 June 2004.

May 2005: The Danish Agency for Palaces and Cultural Properties (SES) presents the report "Future forms of Organisation and Ownership in the Christiania Area". The basis for decision was adopted after a long process with the participation of Christiania's negotiating group among others.

September 2006: After several discussions with Christiania's negotiating group, the residents' attorney and KAB (Københavns Almindelige Boligselskab  - a customer owned non-profit manager of housing associations in Copenhagen) on a clarification of the model, the state sends a specific offer to Christiania on 26 September 2006 concerning implementation of the future organisation and ownership of Christiania.

November 2006: On 20 November, Christiania responds with neither yes nor no.

December 2006: After Christiania's response, SES enters into dialogue with Christiana and their advisers for a clarification and elaboration of the state's offer. On 22 December 2006, this results in an agreement concerning a clarification and supplement to the offer of 26 September 2006. Christiania has a deadline of 8 February 2007 to approve the offer with clarification and supplement and a deadline of 1 April 2007 to withdraw the legal proceedings against the state.

February 2007: On 8 February 2007, Christiania responded that they cannot take a position, as they are in need of further clarification on the agreement. Minister of Finance Thor Pedersen regrets this in a letter to Christiania of 10 February 2007.

March 2007: SES clarifies the agreement further, which leads to Christiania responding to the state on 31 March 2007 that they cannot approve the agreement, as they still have significant reservations. Minister of Finance Thor Pedersen subsequently responds to Christiania in the beginning of April 2007.

August 2007: SES then tries to achieve a common understanding between Christiania and the state concerning the implementation of the agreement of 22 December 2006, which manages to succeed on 24 August 2007. On behalf of Christiania, Christiania's Contact Group accepts the state's offer on 26 September 2006 as clarified and supplemented on 22 December 2006.

June 2008: Christiania receives a deadline of 1 July 2008 to accept the agreement ultimately after an implementation process. On 27 June 2008, Christiania says no to the agreement.

9 September 2008: On 9 September 2008, Christiania sends an action plan to the state concerning the future of Christiania. The action plan suggests that within 14 days a final agreement must be entered into with the state, and that the case will then be abated as reconciled. Minister of Finance Lars Løkke Rasmussen responds to this in the letter of 11 September 2008.

23 September 2008: After several discussions with SES, Christiania clarifies its action plan on 23 September 2008. On the basis of SES' overall assessment of the action plan, in a letter of 30 September 2008, Minister of Finance Lars Løkke Rasmussen refuses to initiate negotiations with the aim of fast conclusion of an overall agreement before the court proceedings in November. SES assesses, among other things, that the economy for Christiania's action plan does not add up, and that on such a weak basis, it is not realistic to enter into an agreement in the short time, which is a prerequisite from Christiania.

26 May 2009: The High Court of Eastern Denmark rules in the favour of the state in the case concerning Christiania. Judgement is made in the lawsuit that Christiania has brought against the Danish state, and where Christiania has claimed permanent right of use of the Christiania area. The High Court of Eastern Denmark has rejected all of Christiania's claims and has ruled in the favour of the state.

18 February 2011: The Supreme Court rules in the favour of the state in the case concerning Christiania. With this, the ruling of the High Court of Eastern Denmark is upheld on 26 May 2009. The ruling means that the state has full right of disposal of the Christiania area, and that the Christiania Law from 2004, which was adopted by a large majority in the Danish Parliament, must now be implemented.

3 March 2011: After the ruling of the Supreme Court, Minister of Finance Claus Hjort Frederiksen sends a letter to the Christianites on the course of events after the ruling and the overall possible solutions.

1 April 2011: The Danish Agency for Palaces and Cultural Properties presents two possible solutions in the letter to the Christianites; either a return to the 2007 agreement or a purchase solution, where Christiania purchases the majority of the buildings.

30 April 2011: Christiania submits a response regarding possible solutions.

9 June 2011: Christiania's negotiators and the Danish Agency for Palaces and Cultural Properties agree on an agreement.

22 June 2011: The State signs the agreement with Christiania that the Christiania area will be transferred to a new foundation, the Foundation Freetown Christiania. The 22 June Agreement means that the purpose of the Christiania Law regarding a change in ownership of the Christiania area and restoration  of the historic monument can be implemented in cooperation with the Foundation Freetown Christiania, the state owner the the Christiania Law regarding a change in ownership of the Christiania area and restoration  of the historic monument can be implemented in cooperation with the Foundation Freetown Christiania, the state owner (via the Danish Building and Property Agency) and other relevant authorities, including the City of Copenhagen and Danish Agency for Culture.

1 July 2012: The part of the 22 June Agreement, which deals with a change in the ownership of the Christiania area, will be implemented in four purchase and lease agreements, whereby the Foundation Freetown Christiania will become owner of 7.3 hectares of the Christiania area and will lease the other 32 hectares.

January 2013: The part of the 22 June Agreement, which deals with restoration and the operation of the historic monument, will be implemented in an agreement between the state and the Foundation Freetown Christiania, which describes the foundation's obligations to the restoration and future operation and maintenance of the ramparts, infrastructure, lighting, utilities, as well as housing allocation and utilities of the residents in the Christiania area, who have chosen to lease areas directly from the state.

13 March 2013: Legislative proposal L 179 for the repealing of the Christiania Law was put forward in the Danish Parliament. The purpose of the Christiania Law from 2004 is that a more specific development in the area should take place, including a change in the ownership, as well as restoration of the ramparts, and that there should not be a special law for the Christiania area in the future. With the conclusion of the 22 June Agreement and the subsequent five implementation agreements, the purpose of the law can be fulfilled.

4 June 2013: On 15 July 2013, the legislative proposal L 179 for the repealing of the Christiania Law is adopted by all parties in the Danish Parliament with the exception of the Danish People's Party. From this moment, the same legislative rules that apply for the rest of Denmark will apply to Christiania. At the same time, adoption of the legislative proposal for the repealing of the special law for the Christiania area marks the end of the negotiation process between Christiania and the state, which started with the amendment of the Christiania Law in 2004.