Two decades after it began to take shape, the development of Valdebebas faces a final stretch in which the large urban project in the northeast of the capital seeks to consolidate itself as a focus of business attraction. The Unlocking the works of the City of Justice and the project for the construction of largest shopping center in northern Madrid They will translate into a new momentum for the area.
– What does the judgment of the Supreme Court that gives the green light to the Community of Madrid to resume the works of the City of Justice imply for Madrid and for the development of Valdebebas?
-The City of Justice must become an essential and irreplaceable instrument for the modernization of Madrid and Spanish Justice. The execution of the infrastructures and facilities that will house will save hundreds of millions of euros per year with which Madrid residents face the costs derived from the current judicial dispersion. As regards the concrete urban development of Valdebebas, the judicial complex will become a dynamic of the tertiary sector. There are more than one million square meters of buildable for offices and hotels, completely urbanized, where many large companies and organizations related to the legal sector will begin to settle. Valdebebas will continue to consolidate in Madrid as a focus for attracting companies and talent.
-Recently, the sale of part of the commercial tablet has also been closed to build the largest shopping center in the north of the capital. What land is still to be developed in Valdebebas?
-Yes, it is one of the highlights of recent months. The governing bodies of the Compensation Board have made real efforts to ensure that the fate of those soils was the one that the more than 18,000 residents of Valdebebas have always claimed, the execution of a large shopping center.
As for the urbanization works in the field, they are now completed in more than 90%. It remains to reach the approval of the last two urban instruments that will culminate and close the development. We work with administrations to close these procedures in the shortest possible time. On the one hand, the modification of the urbanization project that will facilitate the development of all the actions aimed at the execution of the Central Park of Valdebebas, consolidating the green areas of the most sustainable urban area of Spain, which contribute to the city of Madrid more than 5 millions of square meters of these uses with Felipe VI Forest Park, and that will mean a green spot that doubles the surface of Central Park in New York. In addition, the final approval of the Special Network Improvement Plan being processed, which will involve the execution of the so-called 51st street, will mean the closure of Valdebebas by the northeast, facilitating access to the neighborhood of private traffic and public transport and improving thus the mobility of the entire urban network.
-Valdebebas has always aspired to be a new economic axis in Madrid, with projects such as the ambitious Valdebebas Fintech District as an emblem. Can Madrid North hinder that ambition?
-Madrid Nuevo Norte will fortunately become a reality in the coming years. It is an essential action that places Madrid among the main European capitals in urban regeneration and rehabilitation. In Valdebebas we see this action, of course, as complementary to everything we have done in our development. Regarding the economic axis in which it aspires to become, Valdebebas will also be a fact during the next years. The City of Justice, the expansion of Ifema, its strategic location just 3 minutes from one of the most important international airports in the world … makes us a business hub that will complement, without a doubt, the business center from Madrid Nuevo Norte. And in all that way we cannot lose sight of the fact that the times and the terms of one and another field run with very different rhythms, one of them being practically finished and the other beginning its journey. Raising competition between the two developments not only does not benefit Madrid’s consolidation as European capital at the forefront of economic and financial on the continent, but is simply unreal.
-How have the endowment areas and infrastructure of Valdebebas evolved in recent years? What are the main pending tasks?
-In this aspect we must regret, once again, the serious dysfunctions posed by the Spanish urban system. The regime of assignments made by landowners to administrations, as an essential requirement for obtaining capital gains generated by the urbanization process, has a very poor regulation in our legal system. In practice, it becomes a manifestly unfair cast. Beyond statements of intentions in the planning instruments and the generic and nonspecific obligation of public administrations to provide citizens with public services, there is no real co-responsibility between owners and administration to materialize such allocations.
Thus, the new developments are growing at the rate imposed by the current ordinance so that the owners can exercise the gradual acquisition of their urban faculties, so that if they do not fulfill their obligations and duties they will not be able to achieve the right to build. All this subject to maximum deadlines that, if not met, will result in the loss of those rights. However, no one imposes an obligation on the Administration to provide the growing city with the services that its inhabitants demand when they are necessary. The result: the city grows and does not cover the minimum services that citizens need.
Valdebebas is today a lively and dynamic city. Hundreds of shops have been installed in the neighborhood, running at full capacity. Your neighbors can develop in your neighborhood the ideal of what must be daily life in a city of the 21st century, walking, going to its green areas, visiting those quality shops. All without taking the car. However, it also reflects the serious dysfunctions it expressed.