Fast-track Building Licences « Euro Weekly News

Block of flats under construction.
Credit: PxHere

Marga Prohens, head of the Balearic government, aims to simplify urban planning by abolishing the Balearic Environment Commission.

This evaluates the environmental impact of projects. The functions of the cross-departmental commission will be assumed by a senior official at the housing ministry.

The present structure of the commission is admittedly unwieldy, with ten director-generals from government departments, delegates from town councils, three environmental experts, and two technical subcommittees with 21 members each.

However, the environmental impacts of deregulation are as yet unforeseeable and may be far-reaching.

Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez agrees with the new streamlining measures. 200,000 new homes are needed each year to meet demand in the Baleares, only half of which are being supplied at present.

The ministry of economy now wants to unblock fast urban planning licences, a model in place in Madrid since 2010.

Anyone requesting the express services must pay directly for a fast pass, much like choosing priority boarding to avoid queuing for a flight.

This is one of a number of proposed measures to streamline building applications.

The scrapping of a different fast-track approach, the Golden Visa, was recently approved to discourage speculative investments in the real estate sector in exchange for the automatic granting of residence, in an effort not to further artificially inflate already high property prices.

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