Seven new sites for more public services in L’EixampleThe municipal purchase of seven plots of land in the district of L’Eixample means new sites for schools, healthcare, cultural facilities and public housing, as well as space to extend existing facilities and cover local needs better. This is the district with the highest density, its urban make-up and heritage making it difficult to find new spaces for public use.
Some 16.4% of Barcelona residents live in L’Eixample, the district with the largest share of the city’s population but with less municipal facilities per head than the rest: 2.09 square metres, compared to the city average of 6.75 square metres.
The seven sites being acquired are distributed around all the neighbourhoods in the district and mean a boost to municipal services for local residents as a whole:
- Fort Pienc: new educational facility.
- Dreta de l’Eixample: new educational facility.
- Nova Esquerra de l’Eixample: extension to the Escola Auró.
- Antiga Esquerra de l’Eixample: extension to the Institut Poeta Maragall.
- Sagrada Família: new healthcare facility.
- Sant Antoni: one site for educational, healthcare and cultural facilities, and a second for healthcare and most likely rented public housing.
“We’re redressing a long-standing deficit in L’Eixample and materialising a social urban planning demand from local residents which prioritises education, healthcare, cultural facilities and public housing, addressing the needs of neighbourhoods”, noted the Deputy Mayor for Ecology, Urban Planning and Mobility, Janet Sanz, during the announcement of the purchases.
The uses for the sites have been defined with proposals from local residents, who will now continue the process and help decide further details.
The purchase of the land, requiring an investment of 36 million euros, will be completed via a special urban plan to be approved by Full Council in the spring. In all, the process to purchase or expropriate the sites and build the facilities may take between four and eight years, depending on each project.
The seven sites were chosen after evaluating the suitability of ten plots of land in the district, three of them being ruled out for various reasons. In order for the studies to be carried out and to prevent new uses starting which would rule out sites, the issuing of building permits for the plots was suspended for a year.