ORIHUELA council’s governing board this Tuesday will finally approve the controversial plans to build up to 2,200 homes at Cala Mosca.

Work by the Gomendio group on what has been called ‘the last virgin kilometre of the Orihuela Costa’ is expected to start next month.

Orihuela mayor, Carolina Gracia, confirmed the expected news on Friday despite her opposition to the development.

Last year after taking office, Gracia made overtures to Gomendio to see if they were interested in moving to another site, but was rebuffed.

A slightly changed Gomendio plan was submitted for public consultation in February.

The presence of unique flora and fauna led to the suspension of any site development in 2007, with sustained opposition led by environmentalists and residents

The tweaked Gomendio proposals include an expansion of a protected micro-reserve area for the cat head plant and a reduction in the number of holiday homes which will be built.

After last year’s positive environmental impact study commissioned by the Valencian government, the game was pretty much up for opponents to the Cala Mosca urbanisation.

Carolina Gracia said that she could not refuse to submit the project to the governing board for approval after technical reports saw no grounds to block it.

Mayor Gracia

She also mentioned last autumn’s attempts to get Gomendio to look elsewehere but added that the company was not interested once it had cleared the impact study hurdle.

The mayor also repeated that she had been harassed by Gomendio’s solicitor to speed up procedures to approve the project as construction work had to start before the end of May to ensure building permits did not expire.

The most telling factor against Orihuela council trying to block Gomendio is that they would have been liable to compensation payments of up to €200 million which would have in effect bankrupted the administration.


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