Construction of an “industrial village” near the coves postponed indefinitely

The courts on Thursday suspended the creation of an “industrial village” including private and tourist housing, a retirement home, offices and shops in La Madrague-de-Montredon, a district in the south of Marseille, at the foot of the Calanques park.

The cause is the disused Legré Mante factory, located since 1784 on the construction site of the project. For nearly two hundred and twenty-five years, tartaric acid was manufactured there, used mainly in the wine, food and pharmaceutical sectors, until its compulsory liquidation in 2009. Bought by the Swiss investment fund Ginkgo, specializing in the rehabilitation of polluted sites, the former industrial zone was to accommodate constructions that in any case went against the coastal law.

An entire site to be decontaminated… and redeveloped differently

At the request of three neighborhood and environmental protection associations as well as two residents, the administrative court of Marseille cancels the building permits issued by the city hall, the court details in a press release.

The court claims a “failure to inform the public during the investigation” and concludes that “the project does not comply with the coastal law, in that it significantly reinforces the urbanization of this peripheral site” already saturated in terms of road traffic and located at the foot of a protected national park.

Finally, the court notes that the project must change in nature in order to succeed and correspond to “a limited extension of urbanization in space close to the shore” as well as to the “decontamination of the site”.

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