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Article in Costa Calida Reporter 15 th Feb to 28 th Feb 2008
Illegal Buildings Number Around 7,000 in Murcia area.

In the last ten years the equivalent of 1,500 football pitches has disappeared from the Murcia landscape, and in particular the 'orchard areas' which are supposed to be particularly protected from exploitation. Council inspectors have however stopped construction of almost 1,500 illegal buildings and construction projects in the area in the last three years.
The construction of illegal projects seems to have reached a peak here in Murcia , and in 2007 a total of 551 projects was discovered, of which apparently 413 have had sanctions issued and 138 are in the process of appealing. The astonishing figures reveal that the inspectors have their work cut out enforcing the law, but also that illegal projects are being detected at a rate of around one a day.
The figures are, surprisingly, on the increase, as in 2005 a total of 465 "clandestine" projects were discovered. 334 of which were issued sanctions and 131 who are in the process of appealing, and in 2006 the inspectors found 443 properties outside the law. 352 with sanctions and 91 in the process of appeal.
The regulations under the General Plan for Urbanisation, which allows the legalisation of structures built on land classed as "non urbanizahle" have not had much success either. In 2005 only 53 owners of illegal buildings came forward to request legalisation and the necessary permits, whilst in 2006 the figure rose to 82 and in 2007 fell to 66 requests. According to a report from the Commission. of Petitions of the european Parliament, urban development throughout Spain , with Murcia no exception, is riddled with irregularities, and this situation is particular to Spain and not. generally a problem elsewhere in the EU.
Official estimates pur the total number of illegal structures in Murcia at around 7000 and all of these have been built since the 1980's. The legalisation of the houses and buildings needs an architect's involvement, as the data needed is complex and this is apparently one of the reasons that people are deterred from trying to comply with the law.
The degradation of the countryside by excessive urban development along with damage to the reputation of the authorities caused by the uncovering of illegal developments is not a healthy situation for the real estate sector as a whole, and the whole problem is further complicated by the alleged mis-management by the authorities which has led to excessive and in some cases illegal development.

Article in Costa Calida Informer, Issue 126, Page 7, (Spring 2008)
Planning Permission... Is Your House Legal.

If you live in an illegally built house in the municipality of Murcia you now have a chance to legalise it. The Planning Department has announced that they will be processing and accepting the paperwork for illegally built homes until 31 jan 2009. The murcia town council has threatened to demolish as many as 4000 homes, which have been built illegally in the regions countryside. Fernando Berberena, chief planning officer, has warned that after this date due process will be started, which could result in demolition. The town council stated that leaflets would be handed out in areas concerned. The leaflets list the requirements needed to legalise a property, the steps that must be taken and the documentation required. This means that property owners will have to pay the councils charges and taxes but at least their investments will be lega1.


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