Razlog construction intensity catching up with Bansko
Razlog construction intensity catching up with BanskoRazlog construction intensity catching up with Bansko The bed capacity in the Razlog/Bansko skiing area will jump to 200,000 over the next 5 years, Razlog mayor Lyuben Tatarski said in a statement based on the number of building permits issue by the two municipalities. According to Tatarski, five new resorts will pop up alongside Razlog and Bansko which are already established destinations. The local government official tipped Betolovoto, where 2 golf complexes are already under developments, Dobrinishte, Bania, Predela and a golf hotspot taking shape just outside Razlog. The only thing that could sidetrack the multimillion euro investments are the latest changes to the land use regulations and the uncertainties surrounding the designation of protected sites under EU's Natura 2000 program. The municipal authorities are campaigning against a recent legislative amendment which bars them for a period of 5 years from disposing of land unclaimed by its rightful owner. According to Tatarski, the changes should not apply to land that will be contributed to the golf course developments because it consists of rugged and rocky terrain unsuitable for farming. The Razlog municipal council has so far given the go-ahead to 7 golf course projects. The municipality plans to set up joint ventures with each respective developer, contributing parcels ranging from 140 to 220 ha which translate into an equity stake of 20-30%. Tatarski said one work-around in case the law is not amended would be to prepare a land management plan stating that 30% of unclaimed land will be earmarked to compensate owners while the other 70% will be given over to golf resorts. Another option is to draft a masterplan where the farmland parcels slated for golf developments are rezoned as urbanised land. The last 4 golf resorts approved by the Razlog municipality will be developed by Austria's Nord Investment, Britain's Emerging Capital Fund Management and the local Razlog Valley Golf and Balkanstroy. Investment is seen at 60-100 mln euro, said Tatarski. The golf resorts should be completed within 6 years. Over 130 ha of land adjacent to the first golf resort set to partially open for business this summer have been bought up by developers at 100 euro/sq m. They are already building a number of holiday villages with local and foreign funds.
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