Environmentalists call for a halt to new buildings in Xàbia

The group proposes a model of “reforms, yes – new constructions, no” which would be a pioneering policy in the Comunidad Valenciana.

Thursday 29th April 2021 – XÀBIA AL DÍA with Mike Smith

Ecologistas en Acción de la Marina Alta (EAMA) have requested that construction of new buildings in Xàbia be prohibited in a formal objection to the provisional Transitory Urban Regulations that the regional government approved a few weeks ago whilst the General Structural Plan (PGE) is being established and endorsed.

The group claims that the local government board grants building licences to build new homes “plenary session after plenary session”, construction in both the outlying areas as well as the urban centres, one of the last being the residential complex in the lead image which the ecologists have called on the regional government to stop. They claim that the “urban expansion model of Xàbia will have clearly negative consequences” such as over-crowding and a serious impact on flora and fauna as well as climate change.

The environmentalists have highlighted three key effects:

  • Widespread Growth: In Xàbia “there are many homes already”, the only building work that should be carried out should be the renovation of existing buildings.
  • Flora and Fauna: To allow “new developments is to make land where there are terraces, forests and mountain to be consumed by concrete”. Some developments will have an effect on birds, mammals and other like forms.
  • Climate Change: Allowing new residential complexes increases the production of concrete and cement which “means generating emissions that exacerbate the greenhouse effect”.

The drainage infrastructure is “damaged, outdated and insufficient”

In their objections, the environmental group also refer to the sanitation situation in the town, warning that the increase in housing will inccrease the amount of wastewater being generated and “will aggravate a problem that is currently unresolved”.

They highlight that the coast of Xàbia has suffered from “periodic changes” for a long time, some situation that it has attributed to the fact that the infrastructure of the treatment plant, the sewage network and the submarine outfalls in the town “are damaged, outdated, or are insufficient” before claiming that there is “a clear inability to management wastewater generated by existing homes”. Most of them, located in the outlying areas, do not even have a connection to the treatment plant.

Another of the objections that the group have raised is the extensive model of Xàbia, based on the creation of residential complexes in the outlying areas which have “the lack of a good public transport service, resulting in the municipality being full of cars burning fuel”.

They conclude their document by highlighting that it proposes a model of “reforms, yes – new constructions, no” which would be a pioneering policy in the Comunidad Valenciana and become an example for “other coastal towns that have also suffered decades of excessive urban expansion”.