Carmena Approves Los Berrocales, the Largest Housing Development in the South of Madrid

24 January 2019 – El Confidencial

The Government Board chaired by Manuela Carmena will give an important boost to the urban development area of Los Berrocales on Thursday. It is the largest in the city and the first to receive the green light of the sites that comprise the project known as the Developments of the Southeast (Los Desarrollos del Sureste). The Town Hall of Madrid and the Compensation Board for the area have finally agreed the initial text for the urban planning agreement for the management of the buildable land, which will see the construction of 22,000 homes on the largest land bank in the south of the city. 50% of the homes, around 11,000, will be dedicated to social housing.

The General Plan for the city of Madrid obliges the parties involved to sign an urban planning agreement for the management of this area. The Administration and the urban planning entity are signing the commitments assumed by both for the development of the area. According to comments made to this newspaper, the agreement reflects the obligation of the Compensation Board to urbanise the land (which spans 8,305,812 m2 in total) over the course of six phases, during which the planned buildings will be constructed and the services implemented. The project will run until 2034. Moreover, the agreed texts establish the criteria to ensure the equitable distribution of profits and charges between all of the owners (…).

The total buildability amounts to 3.3 million m2, of which 2,247,121 m2 will be dedicated to residential use. 50% of that will be for private housing, 31% for price-controlled housing and 19% for social housing (that latter two percentages correspond to 11,000 homes). The rest will be dedicated to industrial, tertiary, office and commercial use.

In terms of facilities, more than 2 million m2 will be converted into green space, 1.9 million m2 will be used for public facilities and services, 1.7 million m2 for infrastructure and 228,830 m2 will be used for social integration homes.

The agreement reached with the Compensation Board represents a victory for the municipal Government and specifically, for the Sustainable Urban Development department, led by José Manuel Calvo, five months before the end of the current legislature (…).

Following the green light from the Governing Board, the text of the agreement must be submitted for public consultation – a comment period – and afterwards, it will go to the municipal plenary. From that moment, the urban planning entity will be able to start work on the execution of the project.

Original story: El Confidencial (by Paloma Esteban)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Habitat Inmobiliaria Revives a 186-Home Development in Camas (Sevilla)

30 July 2018 – La Vanguardia

Habitat Inmobiliaria has acquired almost 12,000 m2 of land in the Sevillan town of Camas to build a new residential development comprising 186 homes that will involve an investment of more than €30 million. According to the company, the plot on which the new development will be located has a total buildable surface area of 23,357 m2 and the project will allow the re-launch of a development that was first started back in 2009. The marketing of this development will begin at the end of this year.

Specifically, the development will contain 186 homes in total and 277 parking spaces. It will have common areas with green spaces, playgrounds and swimming pools and four commercial premises. According to the property developers, the project is located around 20 minutes from the centre of Sevilla by car and just a few minutes from the bus stop that connects with the regional capital.

According to Habitat Inmobiliaria, the purchase of this plot forms part of the land acquisition plan that the group has launched and the project will be added to the more than 1,400 homes that the company currently has under construction. This operation follows other land purchases made by the firm in Collado Villalba and Móstoles in Madrid and the plots in Entrenúcleos in Dos Hermanas and Mairena del Aljarafe, both in Sevilla.

Currently, Habitat Inmobiliaria has a presence in the Andalucian provinces of Málaga, Córdoba and Sevilla and is interested in continuing to invest in the region, where the company has four developments up for sale and where it is planning to start on new residential developments in the coming months.

Original story: La Vanguardia 

Translation: Carmel Drake

Habitat Inmobiliaria to Build 79 Homes in Collado Villalba (Madrid)

5 June 2018 – El Mundo

Habitat Inmobiliaria has acquired a plot of buildable land in Collado Villalba (Madrid) measuring more than 6,600 m2 on which it is going to build a new real estate development comprising 79 homes and 119 parking spaces distributed over a single 4-storey block. According to a statement from the company, which specialises in the development and construction of residential projects, the two- and three-bedroom homes, will have a useful surface area of between 74 m2 and 94 m2 each, and will all have a terrace. The urbanisation will also have extensive green spaces and a swimming pool.

The future urbanisation is located in Collado Villalba, on Calle Cañada Real, on the corner of Santa Teresa de Jesús and bordered to the south by the Guadarrama River. The area is fully equipped with facilities, schools, nurseries, a doctors’ surgery and supermarkets, and has excellent access to the A6 motorway with connections to Madrid in less than 20 minutes.

The marketing of this new real estate development will begin over the coming months and the scheduled date for the start of the construction work is the third quarter of 2019. In terms of delivery, the homes are expected to be ready by the second quarter of 2021.

Habitat Inmobiliaria indicates that “the acquisition of this plot forms part of the land acquisition plan that the company has launched and which will be added to the more than 1,000 homes that it already has under development”.

Original story: El Mundo (by S.V.)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Aena Kicks Off Spain’s Largest RE Project with Public-Private Investment of €3bn

24 April 2018 – El Confidencial

Aena has fired the starting gun for the largest real estate development plan in Spain, equivalent to four times Operación Chamartín or ten times the Retiro Park. It is the Real Estate Plan for the Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas Airport, which will involve a combined public-private investment of €2.997 billion.

This project, which Aena has been working on since before its stock market debut, proposes the development of 562 hectares of new land, which would allow it to place a buildable surface area of 2.68 million m2 on the market over the next 40 years.

The bulk of the land will be allocated to the development of the largest logistics centre in Spain, which will link the airport’s current cargo loading area with the Corredor del Henares, one of the main logistics regions in the country.

The land allocated to this use will span 257 hectares in total and 1.48 million m2 of buildable surface area, most of which will be developed over the next eight years, and which will mean multiplying the space in the airport dedicated to this use by ten-fold.

The rapid growth of e-commerce and the need from giants such as Amazon and Correos to have large warehouses next to Spain’s largest airport, and the gates of Madrid, are behind the business logic for this move, given that Aena is not planning to build any homes in the area.

In this way, this part of the development will be configured into parks with integrated logistics and transport services, as well as loading warehouses and distribution stores; its main objective will be to serve companies in the electronics, biopharma and perishable product businesses, amongst others. Over the next eight years, the second phase of the plan will begin, aimed at completing the logistics uses and, above all, building a new business centre, known as Airport City, to house the headquarters of large companies such as Aena itself and its parent company, Enaire, as well as four hotels that will add 900 rooms to the existing supply in Madrid.

The total surface area reserved for those uses is 62 hectares, with a forecast buildable surface area of 652,000 m2, 90% of which will be dedicated to offices.

These buildings will be located in an area adjacent to T4, which has already been pre-urbanised and which will have pedestrian access to the terminal, and which will also be connected by public transport (metro, suburban train and bus).

There will also be a leisure and shopping centre, covering a total surface area of 57 hectares and a total forecast buildable surface area of 341,000 m2, plus 298,000 m2 of green space.

Aena hopes to turn this leisure space into a magnet in its own right and, to this end, it plans to open a themed recreation area, a shopping centre, a gastronomic space, wellness areas, an aeronautical museum and panoramic observatories.

“It is an ambitious but realistic plan that is perfectly feasible”, said the Minister for Development, Iñigo de la Serna, during the presentation of the plan this morning, where he also pointed out that the urban planning procedures for these plots of land will be agile.

The plots that form part of this plan will be developed under a concession regime, given that Aena will continue to be the owner. All indications are that at its next meeting, the company’s Board of Directors, chaired by Jaime García-Legaz, will formally initiate this process.

Original story: El Confidencial (by Ruth Ugalde)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Valencia is Awarded 200,000 m2 of Land by the Port for Conversion into Green Space

26 February 2018 – Inmodiario

The mayor of Valencia, Joan Ribó, and the President of the Port Authority, Aurelio Martínez, have jointly presented an agreement for the use by citizens of 195,000 m2 of Port Authority land in the neighbourhood of Natzaret. The site will contain a park (el Parque de Desembocadura) measuring 63,800 m2, a large sports area spanning 88,000 m2, a tertiary use area and the concession of land to allow the Jardín de Túria to be extended to reach the sea.

“Construction work on the future ‘Parque de Desembocadura’ will start soon. Until now, it has been all about the paperwork and negotiations, but people are going to be able to start strolling through here very soon. It is a very important step for the neighbourhood of Natzaret and for the city as a whole, and very important for the redirection of the seafront, which is the main large project that remains outstanding in terms of town planning in Valencia (…)”, said Joan Ribó, after the approval of the agreement by the Board of the Port Authority (…).

The immediate work that the mayor refers to will begin on a plot measuring 22,000 m2, which citizens will be able to enjoy as soon as possible. The granting of the total space spanning 195,000 m2 in the Natzaret area is going to be the city’s third green space, of which the Parque de Desembocadura will occupy 63,802 m2.

At the same time, the plan is to create a sports area, spanning 88,000 m2. “It is going to be an area between the Natzaret and Puerto neighbourhoods, which I think is really important; it is going to have a lot of positive consequences for boosting the neighbourhood and also for mobility and connections between the neighbourhoods and the city (…)”, said Ribó (…).

The agreement also provides for the creation of a tertiary area (located on part of the site of the former Moyresa factory) which will have a surface area of 19,500 m2 and a buildable surface area of 25,000 m2 (…).

Meanwhile, Aurelio Martínz, President of the Port Authority, expressed his satisfaction “about this agreement, which has required lots of months of work and effort to achieve and to which the mutual understanding that exists with the mayor of Valencia has contributed” (…).

He added that it is a former port space, “which is being made available to the Town Hall and to its citizens” and also that “the fence is going to be maintained for reasons of security just like in other parks that are open for use by citizens during the day”.

Original story: Inmodiario

Translation: Carmel Drake

Torre Caleido: Construction Begins of Madrid’s Fifth Tower

1 February 2018 – Expansión

After five months of preparations underground, the construction phase of the 35-storey skyscraper has finally begun. The 180 m tall tower is going to house the IE campus, as well as a horizontal building that will be home to sports facilities, a shopping centre and parking areas.

The starting gun has been fired for the above-ground work on what will become the fifth tower in Madrid. The future skyscraper, measuring 180 m2 tall and comprising 35 storeys, is going to house the new vertical IE campus, which will emerge from a second building, with a base that is going to be 280 m long and 60 m wide, which will form an inverted T-shaped complex, known as Project Caleido.

Inmobiliaria Espacio, the subsidiary of Grupo Villar Mir and Megaworld Corporation, the business conglomerate owned by the Philippine multimillionaire Andrew Tan, are the owners of the company responsible for the construction and operation of the project, with a planned investment of €300 million and which will result in the generation of more than 5,000 jobs during the construction and operation phases (…).

Caleido –designed by the architecture studios Fenwick & Iribarren and Serrano Suñer Arquitectos– will be located in the epicentre of the new financial district in Madrid and will serve to eliminate a blot on the landscape in the north of the capital by connecting Paseo de la Castellana and Avenida de Monforte de Lemos, as well as to revitalise the existing business complex, explains Fernando Serrano-Suñer, one of the architects behind the project (…).

“To date, we have completed the first two phases, involving the demolition work and the construction of the foundations, which are now complete. This week, we will award the construction work, which has been tendered for through a very transparent process, audited by Dypsa”, says José Antonio Fernández Gallar, Director General of Inmobiliaria Espacio.

Third phase

Now, the third phase of construction is going to be launched, involving the building of the tower and the base (…), where the campus sports facilities, a 600-seater auditorium, an indoor swimming pool, libraries, a dining room, a complete shopping floor and a hospital centre specialising in sports medicine run by Quirón will all live alongside 7,000 m2 of green space (…).

Leisure will also play an important role in the complex, with sports areas and events spaces. “We are studying the possibility of including a cinema of some kind, but it would not conform with the traditional style, it would include an e-gaming and e-sport element, something that doesn’t exist in Spain at the moment”.

Moreover, the base will include parking for students and professors, as well as parking for the retail space and another public parking lot, with a total surface area of 42,100 m2 spread over several floors and with capacity for 1,900 parking spaces (…).

In terms of the skyscraper, the 180 m tall building will house 70 classrooms, work and rest areas, as well as double-height spaces to replicate meeting places in traditional campuses (…).

“The project is progressing at a good pace. We have completed the first phase and we are moving forward with the idea that the work will be finished by 2020”, he said.

Original story: Expansión (by R. Arroyo and R. Ruiz)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Aena To Sell More Than 2,000 Ha Of Land Near Its Spanish Airports

15 November 2017 – Expansión

The state-owned group is going to sell more than 2,000 hectares of land around its airports for the construction of hotels, offices and shopping centres. The Ministry of Development is hereby launching a project that is seven times larger than Operación Chamartín.

(…) The Government has given the green light for Aena to launch what is going to be the largest ever operation involving the sale of land in Spain, according to authorised sources from the Ministry of Development speaking to El Mundo.

The new President of Aena, Jaime García-Legaz, has been given the mandate of optimising the value of the resources of the company, in which the Government holds a majority stake, and selling more than 2,000 hectares of land around the country’s main airports. Above all, the sale involves undeveloped, developable land, but it also includes some plots that are already occupied but which have a significant remaining surface area that may also be developed.

Aena’s studies, authorised by the Minister for Development, Íñigo de la Serna, involve the sale of land for the construction of hotels, offices and shopping centres, in line with those surrounding the main airports in Europe.

The land owned by Aena that has been identified as “potentially marketable” is equivalent to seven times the already gigantic Operación Chamartín, which encompasses 311 hectares to the north of Madrid and which is considered to be the largest urban development plan currently underway in the European Union.

Aena has been a major landowner since its constitution in 1990 and in its business plan, the plots of land surrounding the airports in Madrid and Barcelona are essential. Together, they are going to account for more than 50% of the total to be developed, according to preliminary estimates.

Around Adolfo Suárez Madrid Barajas airport, the studies have analysed a gross area of 921 hectares. Taking into account that some of the space will have to be allocated to roads and green areas, it is estimated that at least 573 hectares may be used as plots for lucrative use (…).

In Barcelona, the potentially marketable land comprises 336 hectares, of which 211 hectares would correspond to net lucrative plots. The rest of the real estate operation will focus on the airports in Tenerife Sur, Jerez and Sevilla, in particular.

The sources consulted highlight that the process will be undertaken in phases and that real estate experts will be hired to optimise the transactions, which will consist of the development, rental and sale of plots of land, depending on the option considered most attractive for Aena (…).

The share price of the public airport manager has now recovered to a level not seen since before the departure of the previous President, José Manuel Vargas. It closed yesterday at €159.40 per share, which is equivalent to a market capitalisation of more than €24,000 million. On the day that Vargas resigned, 26 September, each share was worth €151.

Original story: Expansión (by Carlos Segovia)

Translation: Carmel Drake

ARC Homes Will Invest €50M To Build New Homes Over Next 3 Years

2 November 2017 – El Confidencial

The real estate firm ARC Homes plans to invest €50 million over the next two or three years in the construction of new homes in various municipalities in the district of Baix Llobregat, Barcelona.

The first development, comprising 47 homes, will be constructed in Los Jardines de Can Mercader, in Cornellà de Llobregat and will be completed by the end of 2019, according to a statement made by the company today.

The building work will begin during the first quarter of 2018, although the property sales already started on 15 September.

All of the homes will be completely “exterior” (overlooking the street/gardens) and will have large terraces with views of the Can Mercader green space. Prices will range between €260,000 and €450,000, with parking space and storeroom included.

Lane Auten, founder and manager of ARC Properties, the parent company behind the ERC Homes projects, explains that the firm “is in the process of searching for and buying land in towns located in the first and second belt of Barcelona”, in the municipalities of Baix Llobregat, El Vallès and El Garraf, as well as in Sabadell, Sant Cugat del Vallès and Sitges.

Original story: El Confidencial 

Translation: Carmel Drake

Torre Caleido: Villar Mir Unveils Plans For 5th Tower

11 January 2017 – El País

Yesterday, the President of Inmobiliaria Espacio, Juan Villar Mir, presented the plans for the fifth tower on the Paseo de la Castellana in Madrid, which will house the first high rise campus in the city and which will have 36 floors. He did so at an ceremony attended by the mayoress of Madrid, Manuela Carmena (Ahora Madrid) and the delegate for Sustainable Urban Development, José Manuel Calvo. The new skyscraper, designed by the studio Fenwick Iribarren y Serrano-Suñer Arquitectura, will be constructed in Madrid next to the complex known as the Cuatro Torres and will house the new headquarters of the IE University business school.

Construction of the fifth tower, which has been named Caleido, will cost €84 million. The building, which will be constructed at Paseo de la Castellana 259, will house the Instituto de Empresa (IE)’s university campus, a Quirón group medical clinic specialising in preventative medicine and sport, a shopping area and green spaces. The project, presented yesterday on the 42nd floor on the adjoining building Torre Espacio, will create 1,559 jobs during the construction phase and another 3,992 jobs once it is fully operational, according to the developer. It will be the shortest tower in the complex, at just 181m tall.

(…). The IE will occupy a surface area of 50,000 m2, with capacity for up to 6,000 students. By virtue of the lease contract that it has signed, the business school will occupy the property from 2019 onwards for a period of twenty years, extendable for another 55 years.

The total investment, including building costs, urbanisation of the plot allocated to green space, taxes and fees, will exceed €300 million. (…). The project will allow pedestrian access between the Castellana and the Monforte de Lemos thoroughfare, Parque Norte and Parque de los Pinos.

Villar Mir acquired the right to construct this skyscraper in April 2015 as the result of a public tender promoted by the Town Hall of Madrid. According to the terms set out by the Town Hall, most of the property must be used for healthcare or educational purposes, given that the plot must have a social purpose. Operation of the plot, which is owned by the Town Hall, has been granted to the company Torre Vida S.A.U. for 75 years, in exchange for an annual fee of €4 million, the highest offer of the four companies that competed in the public tender.

The Town Hall will assess, in coordination with the EMT and the Regional Transport Consortium, the requirement to reinforce and improve the transport infrastructure that supports the area, given the forecast increase in activity in the area as a result of the new building. (…).

Original story: El País (by Pelayo Escandón)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Villar Mir Puts 5th Skyscraper On Hold To Focus On OHL

21 September 2015 – Expansión

Grupo Villar Mir has decided to put the project to construct a fifth tower in the Cuatro Torres Business Area on the Paseo de la Castellana in Madrid on hold. The project was going to involve an investment of €500 million, but instead the group will focus all of its financial resources on the clean up of OHL.

The construction company, in which the businessman Juan Miguel Villar Mir holds a majority stake (59.8%), has announced a €1,000 million capital increase to reduce its debt and strengthen its balance sheet. Villar Mir has been investigating different ways of obtaining the more than €500 million it needs to finance the operation and avoid a reduction in its stake in the company. The businessman has been forced to sell some of the capital that he held in two listed companies, Colonial and Abertis. He has raised €559 million through these two operations.

Moreover, at the end of June, Villar Mir engaged the real estate consultancy Aguirre Newman to sell Torre Espacio, the other skyscraper that the group owns in the complex on the Castellana. Villar Mir hopes to receive €650 million for the building. However, the process is being drawn out by the fact that, to date, the group has not received any offers that meet its expectations. The company has decided to invite more investors to participate in the process, which was initially scheduled to close this summer.

Grupo Villar Mir was awarded the plot of land behind the Cuatro Torres complex a few months ago….after it committed to pay an annual fee of €4 million for the use of the land for the next 75 years.

On the newly acquired plot, which has a surface area of 33,325 m2 and 70,000 m2 of buildable area, Juan Migual Villar Mir was going to allocate 53,000 m2 for social use (i.e. to provide some kind of public service). The remaining 16,500 m2 was going to be allocated for commercial use, with a further 33,647 m2 of green space.

Villar Mir had hoped to lease the building to a hospital group, which would dedicate the majority of the space to its own centre and the remaining floors to research. (…).

Tenant

Meanwhile, Villar Mir reached a pre-agreement with the USA company Mount Sinai, to open a Spanish branch of its prestigious New York medical centre in the future tower. However, the US firm was not convinced by the structure of the building; it would rather rent a less tall building, which is more practical for a hospital and with a more affordable rent.

Without a tenant, it will be difficult for Villar Mir to tackle such an expensive project. In addition to the €300 million that it will have to pay for the plot of land, by means of the annual fee of €4 million over 75 years, Villar Mir will have to spend at least another €140 million on the construction of the new building.

The group and especially its president do not want to give up on the project and are still working on a solution. The search continues for a tenant in the hospital sector or from the world of education, to open a centre of reference in the building. Another alternative for Villar Mir would involve the redesign of the project and the construction of several high-rise buildings, rather than a single skyscraper.

Original story: Expansión (by R. Ruiz and C. Morán)

Translation: Carmel Drake