Urban Rehabilitation up 0.2% in November
Order books for urban rehabilitation projects saw an increase of 4.5% on last year with a monthly growth of 0.2% like-for-like on November 2018.
According to the Urban Rehabilitation Barometer compiled by AICCOPN which quizzed consrruction business owners in the sector as well as those in contracted production with an overall “shower of projects” regstered throughout 2019.
The Urban Rehabilitation market mushroomed in Portugal in the wake of the Great Depression between 2007 and 2014 which hits new-build construction projects hard and contributed towards saving the building sector in the country by attracting investment from various fronts.
It has continued to grow over the past five year with the sector registering an increase of 27.2% in January 2019 with an order book which grew significantly from the start of last year.
One urban area in Lisbon that particulalry attracted capital was the historic area of Marvila which has been firmly placed on the map of growth areas in the city thanks to a mushrooming of startups and co-working spaces.
It was sold by the Maria António Barreiros Fund to the company Refletecarismas, SA for 17 million euros for a project by architects Frederico Valassina.
The year was also marked by the annoucement by the city council to redevlop Praça de Espanha by 2020 with a new park with recreation, sports and leisure areas at a cost of 6 million euros.
Then there was the restoration works for the historic Mercado do Bolhão market in Porto which began in May 2018 but are set to continue until May 2021.
Enjoying a particularly dynamic year, Porto and the entire North region saw projects to refurbish the Batalha cinema for nearly 4 million euros by 2021, the Forte da Ervilha which was a military base in the Portuguese Civil War of 1828-1834 will be converted into a housing complex, while the former industrial premises of Adira on Rua António Bessa Leite in Porto will be turned into a significant real estate project.
The same will happen to a former canning factory in Matosinhos which will be turned into a condomimium with 66 apartments.
In downtown Porto a historic building will be comnverted into premium housing. The Cooper Rresidence will comprise 23 luxury apartments next to the famous Port Wine Cellars. Another new luxury condominium will arise in the former Palacete Cedopfeita, a 19th century mansion which should be completed in 2020.
To these projects are added the Quinta no Douro with a 12 million German investment. On the island of Madeira the regional government has decided to provide a raft of tax benefits for six urban rehabilitation projects in Funchal, while in Aveiro Civilria has converted Avenida 60, a building located on Av. Lourenço Peixinho in the heart of the city in a 5 million euro investment.
The year closed new and tighter rules governing Urban Rehabilitation with a new law that came into force on 15 November 2019 and implying a number of changes to regulations, namely the General Urban Building Regulation with a number of measures regarding vulnerability to earthquakes, fire safety measures, heat, water, soundproofing and energy saving measures as well as access ways to buildings which will need to be addressed according to the new regulations if projects are to advance.