29 October 2015 – Cinco Días
Manuela Carmena, the mayoress of Madrid, wants to start to resolve the situation known as Operación Chamartín, a town planning project in the North of the city that has been up in the air for more than 20 years now. The project is being led by the company Distrito Castellana Norte, in which BBVA owns a stake of more than 70%; the remaining shares are owned by Grupo San José. In order to move forwards, two working groups will be launched, one political and one technical, comprising officials from the Town Hall.
The Town Hall of Madrid will constitute a so-called “political and social table”, which all four of the political parties that have representation in the local government (Ahora Madrid, PP, PSOE and Cuidadanos) will be invited to join. Neighbourhood associations and the company Distrito Castellana Norte will also be encouraged to participate, according to sources at the Town Hall.
The mega-project, which was initially going to be approved by the PP during the previous legislature, will involve private investment amounting to around €6,000 million, the development of land covering 3.1 million m2 and the construction of up to 17,500 homes, over several phases.
The political table will monitor the conditions that Operación Chamartín will have to fulfil to be accepted, based on those approved yesterday by Ahora Madrid and the PSOE, which in turn rejected proposals made by Ciudadanos to create the table immediately and resolve the project within three months.
Ahora Madrid and PSOE agreed instead to an amendment to replace the proposal submitted by Cuidadanos. That group had released a statement defending the immediate creation of the table with the municipal groups, in order to establish the basic guidelines for resolving the operation within a maximum period of 90 days.
Meanwhile, the representative for Sustainable Urban Development, José Manuel Calvo, responded that it does not make sense to limit the duration of the debate to three months, however he added that there is no doubt that the current situation needs to be resolved soon.
Original story: Cinco Días (by Alfonso Simón Ruiz)
Translation: Carmel Drake