AROUND SLOVAKIA - BRATISLAVA

Builder fined for demolition of historical chimney

BRATISLAVA'S Old Town district slapped the Twin City construction company with a fine on February 15 for the illegal demolition of old industrial buildings, the SITA newswire wrote.

BRATISLAVA'S Old Town district slapped the Twin City construction company with a fine on February 15 for the illegal demolition of old industrial buildings, the SITA newswire wrote.

The Old Town will reveal the exact amount of the fine after an official copy is delivered to the company. The maximum fine for such an offense is Sk2 million (Ř60,600).

Twin City, a daughter company of real estate developer HB Reavis, has spent the last three months tearing down buildings of the former Kablo factory, including a brick chimney, to make space for the new Twin City complex.

According to the Old Town, the company was not granted permission to tear down the former factory's production halls and other facilities.

The investor requested a demolition permit in August 2007, but received no response because the Old Town was waiting for the Regional Monuments Board to decide whether the factories were protected landmarks.

Želmíra Rácová, spokesperson for the HB Reavis Group, confirmed that the company demolished the chimney before permission was granted, but said it was necessary because the buildings' bad condition was endangering neighbouring buildings and the public.

Activists working to prevent the demolition of historical buildings in Bratislava consider the Sk2 million fine laughable for a project that is projected to be worth Sk17 billion (Ř515 million), the newswire wrote.

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