Even though the construction sector is still in a state of coma on a national level, Marbella continues to show signs of movement with regard to property, according to the annual report issued by the Town Planning Department. In 2012, the council issued licences for the construction of 312 homes, compared with 147 in 2011. “This shows that there is activity in Marbella and the town continues to be the focus of attraction for many investors” comments Town Planning councillor Pablo Moro.
Other information appears to back this up, such as a 20 per cent increase in the number of first occupancy licences. These relate to 993 properties with a value of over 138 million euros. With regard to permits which have been issued for minor works, there was an increase of 10 per cent last year, bringing the figure to 2,218, and a budget of 23 million euros.
Another example of the town's economic strength is that about twenty strategic investment projects have been made public, among them the initiative by Grupo Peñarroya to build a tourism complex on a 350 hectare site in Las Chapas area. “These are projects which will give a boost to Marbella and could become the exit point from the crisis”, says Town Planning director Mario Ruiz.
During the past twelve months, the council has also been pushing forward projects for the future, although progress is slow, among other reasons because of lack of investment. These include the transfer of La Ermita industrial estate and the congress complex which is planned in Holanducía, or Guadaiza. In total, the Town Planning Department dealt with around 10,000 cases last year, of which 3,991 correspond to planning and management.