The donut will have company. Thus is known the Institute of Forensic Medicine of Madrid, which for years has represented the lonely banner of what the Esperanza Aguirre government projected in 2004 as a macrowork to bring together all the judicial authorities of the region, currently scattered about thirty different points. The Autonomous Community of Madrid has just approved the tender for the works of the new Valdebebas City of Justice, which will welcome 30,000 people between users and staff every day during operation. Something that won’t happen before 2025.
Isabel Díaz-Ayuso’s executive has resorted to the formula that the PP has been using in the region for years: millionaire concessions stretching over decades in exchange for the developer’s payment of the initial investment. Whoever wins the tender will receive 50 million euros annually for around 36 years (1,800 in total) and can operate the commercial areas, parking garages and offices against payment of security, cleaning or customer services. A period of between 36 and 48 months is set for the construction period.
The government’s goal, as explained by Minister of Justice Enrique López, is “savings of more than 20 million euros compared to the 72 million euros invested annually in the provision of the same service, including rent, surveillance, cleaning, electricity supply or archiving, among others “. The concentration of offices has been a historic demand from members of the justice sector, who have traditionally claimed not to have to travel to as many places to carry out the procedures of their work. The complex will have facilities such as parking lots, sports, leisure and Health centers, cafeterias and a kindergarten, “all aimed at reconciling work and family life and improving the quality of life of its users,” emphasized López.
The original project of this city of justice is overshadowed by corruption and waste. Conceived by then-President Esperanza Aguirre as a work to make a mark, the National Supreme Court is today conducting an investigation into the alleged embezzlement plan hatched at its establishment, indicting various senior officials in the Aguirre executive branch. They are accused of having hatched “a criminal plan” for “irregular” awarding of contracts. “They have significantly corrupted the decision-making process and severely impacted its operations and economic results,” said one of the judges who presided over the case, which is now in the hands of Judge Pedraz.
The Ayuso government has given up using the designs developed by Aguirre, into which it has invested millions of euros. The Madrid government spent at least 1.5 million euros just on the models of the buildings, signed by some of the most famous architects in the world such as Norman Foster or Zaha Hadid, although they were never built. Foster also received 10 million for some plans. The community spent 1.4 million euros on the laying of the foundation stone in 2007. “This project has nothing to do with the Esperanza Aguirre Judicial Campus or Ignacio González’s Judicial City,” a ministry spokesman assured this newspaper when it was revealed that the old designs would not be used.
This is a second and renewed opportunity to build a modern and stunning complex where justice is done in Madrid. The donut won’t be so alone anymore.
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