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2013.06.19 11:52

IKEA’s major spa resort project in Lithuania finally gets going

DELFI|The Lithuania Tribune2013.06.19 11:52

Five years after Pinus Proprius, the Lithuanian real estate development and management arm of Swedish Ikea’s property unit, launched a major spa hotel development in seaside Palanga, the project will be sent back to the drawing board, writes the Baltic Business News with reference to news2biz Lithuania. 

Five years after Pinus Proprius, the Lithuanian real estate development and management arm of Swedish Ikea’s property unit, launched a major spa hotel development in seaside Palanga, the project will be sent back to the drawing board, writes the Baltic Business News with reference to news2biz Lithuania.

According to the Baltic Business News, this, in fact, is good news for Pinus Proprius, as it means that the project that was conceived back in 2006 and started in 2008 is actually not dead.

The project stalled right after it was launched in 2008, after Klaipėda prosecutors started investigation into the project’s detailed plan and construction license that had allegedly breached public interest.

The public interest in this case was defending a 1995 Palanga’s special heritage protection scheme that some of Pinus Proprius project’s architectural features, such as the number of floors and built-up area density, conflicted with.

By how much did the spa hotel project breach those regulations? The property was to be just one metre higher than the old swimming pool building that has been pulled down to make room for the new development, while the allowed built-up area density was to be exceeded by 1.5 per cent.

During the whole legal process, Pinus Proprius claimed that local public heritage protection agencies had been consulted extensively before the final project blueprint was drafted and submitted for approval to the city council.

The breakthrough in this case was achieved this May, when an out-of-court agreement was reached between the Palanga municipality from one side and the prosecutors with heritage protection agencies on the other. Before then a court decided that the special heritage protection scheme could in fact be used as guidance, not a proper legal act.

Pinus Proprius will now modify its 210-room spa hotel project and will need to apply for construction license anew. “At this moment we do not know how this will affect our project investment budget, neither do we have a new timeline for the project,” said Kestutis Vedeckis, head of Pinus Proprius, to news2biz.

“We need to amend the project and approve it once again, so there is no way we can say, in what way and how exactly it will be changed,” he added.

The future hotel operator, Estonian Legendijuhtimise  

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