Bratislava gets its first construction ombudsman

His task is to help Bratislavans comprehend construction permission processes and explain their rights.

Jaroslav Pavlovič, first construction ombudsman in BratislavaJaroslav Pavlovič, first construction ombudsman in Bratislava (Source: TASR)

The process of building, permissions and construction in Slovakia is currently very complicated and subject to many regulations. To help citizens understand the permit process and explain their rights if they feel affected by a construction project, Bratislava city council has created the post of construction ombudsman. The first person to hold this position is Jaroslav Pavlovič.

“We need somebody who will fight for the rights of people in terms of construction processes,” said Bratislava Mayor Matúš Vallo, when introducing the first ombudsman on Friday, January 31, as cited by the TASR newswire, adding that Pavlovič has the authority and a detailed understanding of all these processes.

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In this way the city council will also keep itself well informed about what is happening in the city as it does not possess the power to decide in individual construction cases. In Bratislava, it is the construction offices of the individual boroughs that issue building and other permits related to construction.

Why and when to turn to the ombudsman

Bratislava's citizens can turn to the construction ombudsman for advice on problems with illegal construction, in the case of incentives pertaining to violations of the master plan or doubts about the proper action of the respective authorities when deciding on construction, or in other cases, when they would feel affected by construction in the city. The ombudsman will not serve to provide consultations concerning citizens’ own construction plans.

“My service will not replace construction offices or other bodies with powers to act, but people often do not know how to protect and employ their rights in the case of an illegal construction being erected in their vicinity,” said Pavlovič, as cited by TASR, adding that he will also monitor whether important concrete constructions are being built in line with the master plan and the permissions granted.

Those interested can contact the ombudsman each Monday between 9:30-12:30 and Wednesday 13:00-15:00 in the New City Hall at Primaciálne Square 1, without the need to make an appointment. On Tuesday morning and all day Thursday it will be possible to book a consultation via the city website.

Pavlovič speaks Russian and German and the city council will secure translation services if communications require English.

Who is Jaroslav Pavlovič

Jaroslav Pavlovič has been working in the field of urban development for 37 years. He headed construction offices in Bratislava’s boroughs of Karlova Ves and the Old Town. In 2008, he received the White Crow award for the fight against the illegal waste dump in Pezinok, where he represented the citizens of that borough.

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