Metrovacesa to Develop Offices and Hotels on 1.2 Million Square of Land by 2023

20 August 2019

Last year, Metrovacesa revealed that its holdings include a gigantic, 6-million-m2 portfolio of land, enough to build 40,000 new homes. That total also 1.25 million square meters of land slated for the construction of offices, hotels and logistics assets.

The firm announced its intention to “sell or develop” most of the 1.25 million square meters by 2023. Metrovacesa revealed plans for four major developments, accounting for 60% of the land bank, in a total investment of almost €390 million. The projects include La City and Loinsa in Barcelona and Clesa and Valdebebas in Madrid. Spain’s two biggest cities account for 86% of the portfolio, and 94% of those lands already have urban planning permits.

The largest of the four is City Metropolitana, in Barcelona’s L’Hospitalet de Llobregat, with a buildable area of ​​135,000 m2. The property company plans to build mostly offices on the site, along with up to 20,000 m2 for hotels. Metrovacesa also has 58,131 m2 of buildable land in Madrid, where it plans to build Valdebebas. That project will likely consist of a 4-building office complex.

Original Story: Cinco Días

Adaptation/Translation: Richard D. K. Turner

Metrovacesa Receives Green Light to Build Madrid’s ‘Medicine City’

3 October 2018 – Eje Prime

Metrovacesa has received the green light to start work on the construction of ‘medicine city’ in Madrid. The Town Hall, led by Manuela Carmena, and the property developer have reached a definitive agreement to start work on a large complex to be dedicated to tertiary use in the north of the Spanish capital.

Specifically, the building work will be carried out in the vicinity of the Ramón y Cajal Hospital. The industrial plot measuring almost 44,000 m2 and owned by Metrovacesa, will be used to build commercial facilities and accommodation, according to reports published by El Confidencial.

The new complex will serve the neighbourhood and users of the Ramón y Cajal Hospital. The agreement between the Town Hall and Metrovacesa also covers the protection of the milk group Clesa’s old factory, a property considered important due to its industrial architecture and in whose honour the operation has been named. That installation occupies more than 10,400 m2.

Of the remaining space, 22,900 m2 will be allocated to accommodation, including a hotel and rental apartments for the exclusive use of users of the hospital. Another 19,800 m2 will be dedicated to a student hall of residence, in particular, to accommodate students of the MIR and other doctors visiting the centre. Finally, 3,000 m2 of space has been reserved for commercial use.

The initiative began in 2014, when the real estate company asked for a licence to demolish the Clesa factory, with the idea of building a residential complex. Nevertheless, the Town Hall of Madrid did not approve that change in classification of the land from industrial to residential.

With the arrival of Manuela Carmena to the Town Hall of Madrid, negotiations began to redesign the project. In this way, the recovery of a historical building is promoted and the Ramón y Cajal Hospital will become an important health pillar, according to a statement issued by the Town Hall of Madrid.

Original story: Eje Prime 

Translation: Carmel Drake

Metrovacesa Sets Up A ‘Land Bad Bank’ To Carve Out Its Residential Business

8 July 2015 – El Confidencial

Make someday today (‘Algún día es hoy’). The slogan of Metrovacesa’s new marketing campaign is a declaration of intent regarding the direction that the real estate company has decided to take now that Rodrigo Echenique has taken over as the new Chairman of the company.

In this context, and having closed the refinancing of the company, the Director has set the objective of restoring the company to its past splendour and consolidating its position as one of Spain’s largest real estate companies, capable of competing head to head with Colonial and with the large socimis, such as Merlin and Hispania, which are now establishing themselves amongst the main landowners in the country.

The first step of this ambitious strategy entails a move that the experts in the sector have been pondering for some time…and which the company is already working on: the creation of a bad bank for its land assets. Sources at Metrovacesa say that although the option is already on the table, a final decision has not yet been taken.

The real estate company’s plans involve making a similar move to the one implemented by Colonial five years ago, when it separated its land and development assets and placed them into a newly created company, called Asentia. It was the beginning of an ambitious clean-up plan that was completed last year, when the subsidiary was sold to several funds.

In the case of Metrovacesa, the idea is to separate the residential and land businesses, according to sources close to proceedings, to focus on growing its property business, especially the buildings located in prime areas, which represent 75% of its turnover. The thorniest point of this strategy are the provisions that will likely have to be made to carry out the carve-out, which will be offset when this business is sold, since that will allow it to deconsolidate all of the associated debt. (…)

In its results for 2014, Metrovacesa already included several provisions for losses on certain assets and valued its entire portfolio at €4,800 million. The portfolio comprises: 8 shopping centres and 2 more that are being constructed (one is scheduled to be opened this year and the other has been placed under review); 8 hotels in operation, as well as the hotel that Barceló will manage in the Torre de Madrid; and 34 office buildings, the jewel in the group’s crown, which have a combined gross leasable area of 520,000 m2, in Madrid and Barcelona.

In terms of housing, the real estate company owns 35 developments across ten provinces (…), whilst in terms of land, it is currently marketing plots to individuals in another half a dozen municipalities (…).

But the bulk of the group’s land business comprises developments that are underway in Alicante, where it plans to construct 300 homes in an urban development covering 48,000 m2; Sevilla, with Project Palmas Altas Sur, a plot measuring 679,223 m2 where 2,870 homes will be built; Tarifa, where it wants to build la Ciudad del Surf, with 600 hotel beds, 7,500 m2 of retail space and up to 250 homes; Hospitalet del Llobregat, close to Barcelona, comprising almost 160,000 m2 of buildable space for tertiary use; and Madrid, where the company is trying to obtain permits to build a residential development on the site of the former Clesa factory.

Following the capital increase approved last spring to capitalise the group’s bank debt, the shareholders of Metrovacesa currently include Santander, which holds a 58.67% stake, BBVA (19.42%), Banco Sabadell (13.85%), Popular (7.99%) and other small investors (0.071%).

Once the residential business has been carved out, the entities will have to agree on the best way to maximise the value of their shareholdings, from a range of possibilities that have been put on the table. These include: creating a hotel Socimi, finding a partner to buy some of the capital and listing on the stock market.

Original story: El Confidencial (by Ruth Ugalde)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Metrovacesa To Build Homes & Hotels In Clesa Factory

28 May 2015 – Expansión

The real estate company and the College of Architects are holding a competition for ideas to renovate the main building of the complex in Madrid and develop homes, hotels and retail spaces.

Recover an industrial area that was abandoned years ago, and integrate it into the new urban plan for Madrid. That is the ambitious project that the real estate company Metrovacesa finds itself immersed in.

The company has decided to convert the Clesa factory – the former dairy brand of the Ruiz Mateos group – in Madrid, into a residential area with all sorts of amenities, as well as hotels and retail spaces. The project includes the demolition of 16 industrial warehouses that make up the complex, but one building, created by the architect Alejandro de la Sota, will be maintained. “The disused building was neglected by the former tenants, which constructed adjoining properties. We have been working on (this project) for months and in the end, last Friday, we got the green light from the Town Hall of Madrid for the classification (of the property) as a protected building”, explained Carlos García León yesterday, Director General at Metrovacesa.

The area, located on Avenida Cardenal Herrara Oria in Madrid, next to the Ramón y Cajal hospital and with 90,000 square metres of buildable area, has been empty for the last six years, when the business conglomerate owned by the Ruiz Mateos families ran into financial difficulties. Metrovacesa has been the joint owner of the factory since 2006 and in 2013, it became the sole owner of the property.

Now, and with an investment of more than €30 million, Metrovacesa will reduce the buildable surface area to 70,000 square metres, of which 9,000 m2 relate to De La Sota’s protected building; the remainder will be split as follows: 60% for homes, both unsubsidised (free homes) and subsidised social housing; and 40% for tertiary properties.

“We have listened to the requests made by people in the area, such as the families of patients at the hospital, who do not have retail areas or hotel rooms to stay in”, explains José Antonio Granero, Dean of Madrid’s Official College of Architects (el Colegio Oficial de Arquitectos de Madrid or COAM).

Competition for ideas

The first phase of this new urban development will feature the protected building. To this end, Metrovacesa has teamed up with COAM to hold a competition for ideas to renovate the property, designed in 1959 and completed in 1961, to find a new use for it. “The competition will be announced next week once the Town Hall’s approval of the change to the general plan has been published in the BOE”, explain sources at COAM. The decision to award the project will evaluate both the proposals for the provision of services in the area, as well as their technical and economic feasibility. Interested architects may submit their proposals to a panel comprising directors from Metrovacesa, architects from COAM and members of Madrid’s Town Hall.

For the renovation of this space alone, the real estate company will invest between €15 million and €20 million.

Furthermore, Metrovacesa has signed an agreement with Adif for the transfer of 1,000 square metres of space, which the railway manager will use to improve the station that is currently closest to the site. “Adif is going to build a footbridge to link the area with the Ramón y Cajal hospital, which is currently separated from the complex by the train tracks.

Original story: Expansión (by Rocío Ruiz)

Translation: Carmel Drake