From Chamartín to Méndez Álvaro Operation

27/01/2014 – Cinco Días

Neither Chamartín, nor Eurovegas, not even Ciudad de la Justicia…: Operation Méndez Álvaro. The largest urban-planning development carried currently out in the center of Madrid with view on being a short-term fact, designed on four parcels occupying a total space equivalent to more than ten football fields and situated between the south bus and the Atocha stations, along the Méndez Álvaro street. Nearly 17 years after the project on the said land had been designed, the plan is taking shape.

An old building formerly occupied by Bayer, Zardoya, Algisa, and other companies located within the area disappeared in the last months, and so did a small complex of homes hosting life-time neighbours. Now trucks, cranes and excavators are pressing on to prepare the land under developments, just in front of the new premises of Repsol in Madrid.

However, neither the meagre development movement in this part of the city, nor the ugly placard inform what, who, why and for what the works are being carried out on the Méndez Álvaro street. The surroundings are humming with rumours (…).

The project on the land mentioned has been designed in the 90s. The City Council of Madrid approved it in 2000 as a part of the Special Plan for Internal Reform (PERI) of the scope called Méndez Álvaro Norte I, presented in 1997. The development project was finally approved in 2007.

The Board of Compensation of the unit consists of owners of the lands involved: Adif, Anida (the real estate company of BBVA), the City Hall of Madrid, and other small businesses. Zardoya Otis Group that had a factory in the area, sold its parcel to Nozar, a real estate company (…).

(…) The owners will have invested about 25 million Euros by the end of the expropriation and development period. (…) By the end of 2015, the majority of the affected land will be developed and the last building wrecked to the ground. (…) After proposing a compensation project to the City Hall, the board of compensation will be able to sell the developed land to developer companies, funds, trade or hotel groups. (…) That will not happen soon, though.

(…) The technical report on the Méndez Álvaro plan provided by a governmental department sets development potential for residential use space at 176.075,5 square meters and for tertiary use at 58.539,5 m2.

(…) The bureaucratic sluggishness seems to act in the interests of the Méndez Álvaro Operation, as “if everything had been accelerated and the permissions issued few years ago, maybe the projects would have ended up in failure” – the board says. “Imagine that we had sold the developed land between 2007 and 2008 at the boom prices… the developers in charge would have been left completely bankrupt”.

At present, the closest new residential development, next to the premises of Repsol, is Residencial Nebulosa of the real estate company Vía Célere. (…).

Source: Cinco Días