After a moratorium of almost two years on all new planning permission in the area, the regional government of Catalonia has taken a crucial step towards formalising the reduction of new development on the Costa Brava.
Back in February 2019 the Catalan authorities suspended all new planning permission pending a review of the entire urban plan for the sensitive coast line of Girona province, known best as the Costa Brava, affecting as many as 15,000 new homes, and several hotels.
The next step towards the new plan was taken last Thursday when the Town Planning Commission for Girona province provisionally approved a new Urban Master Plan (known locally as a Plan Director Urbanístico or PDU) for ‘unsustainable land on the coast of Girona’, also called the ‘Protection Plan for the Costa Brava’, which will eliminate from the previous plan capacity for 14,852 homes out of a total of 30,843 in 17 municipalities on the coast.
The municipalities most affected include Roses, with new building capacity reduced from 6,624 homes to 1,000, Begur from 1,207 to 629, and Pals, from 2,259 to 1,202.
Ecologists say the new plan “is a big step forward, but not enough to save the Costa Brava.” Environmental groups in the area have been campaigning for years against new development with their slogan “save the Costa Brava.”
Local politicians are not happy. Maite Selva, Mayoress of Begur, says she feels cheated. “They made us waste our time giving false expectations to those affected,” she told the Spanish press. “They made us do a lot of work but didn’t listen to anything we said. Regardless of what they say I don’t understand how they can justify declassifying consolidated urban land without compensating owners.”
Once approved provisionally, the plan must get the nod from the Land Commission of Catalonia, which is due to meet in December. Once approved, and published in the official gazette, it will come into force the next day.