29 April 2016 – Cinco Días
Around 1,200 cooperative members can now see the way out of their housing investments in the new Madrilenian neighbourhood of Arroyo Fresno. Yesterday, at the meeting of the Governing Body, the Town Hall of Madrid approved the the plans to unblock the urban development of this new area in the north of the city, next to Herrera Oria.
According to a statement from the Town Hall, the team led by Manuela Carmena (Ahora Madrid) hereby “put an end to a long process”, which began in 1999. The new neighbourhood, which was divided into two sections, saw the completion of the construction of 1,957 homes in one section, and the paralysis of the construction of 1,283 homes in the other section, due to the absence of the necessary land subdivision plans. In this way, the uncertainty that was looming over 1,200 families, registered with the different cooperatives, has come to an end.
The paralysation of the project was caused in part by the fact that the Municipal Housing and Land Company (EMVS) had not paid off the debt that it owed to the Town Hall of Madrid, amounting to €29.7 million, according to sources at the Town Hall. Furthermore, the amount was not even recognised in the accounts of the municipal company. This has been now corrected, with the recognition of a liability by the current Board of Directors of the entity, a review of its accounting statements and a capital increase.
The affected area in Arroyo Fresno is located in the south west of the neighbourhood. With a surface area of 734,154 m2, the plots resulting from the plan that has been approved have a total buildable area of 23,087 m2 for residential use, allocated in its entirety for social housing, and 145,031 m2 for other uses (other housing, commercial and tertiary).
According to a study performed last year by the real estate consultancy firm Knight Frank and the Fundación Asprima, the land in this area has become the most expensive of all of the new urbanisations in the city, with prices ranging between €1,600/m2 and €1,800/m2.
Original story: Cinco Días (by Alfonso Simón Ruiz)
Translation: Carmel Drake