Home > Bulgaria crime and corruption > Sofia Mayor Borisov Reports on Bulgaria Student Town Inspections

Sofia Mayor Borisov Reports on Bulgaria Student Town Inspections

Inspections of a total of 79 establishments in the Studentski Grad borough showed mainly a complete lack of control by the municipality and the state, low rents and “incorrect association with private companies,” Bulgarian daily Gradski reported.
Five establishments could not produce any construction documents at all.

“We are both guilty, the state and the municipality,” Sofia mayor Boiko Borissov was quoted as saying at the presentation on February 14.

Among the facilities inspected were casinos, discos and restaurants, and were built on land owned by the university, the municipality, the state as well as private land. The ownership of the land of one property could not be established.

Among the most glaring violations were the bars, constructed against the Zimniya Dvorets (Winter Palace) stadium and the illegal discos held there, Borissov said.

Most prevalent offense among private companies was illegal expansion of facilities.

Municipal companies Municipal Market East and Campus were accused of a lack of control and of having charged low rents. The Campus company had been liquidated in June 2007.
“Campus was a subsidiary of Municipal Market East. Club Amnesia, in front of which 20-year-old student Stoyan Baltov was killed in late 2008, paid 240 euro monthly rent according to a contract with Campus from 2006,” Borissov was quoted as saying.

Borissov said he had ordered a review of rent contracts and an increase in rents.
As an example, he gave the recent rent increase for Pri Kmeta (At the Mayor), which saw its rent go from 4000 to 25 000 leva.

Subletting municipal property would also be prohibited, Borissov said.

Sofia’s chief architect Petar Dikov said some of the problems of Studentski Grad would be solved by the creation of mini-campuses with access only for students. These areas would be free of bars, Dikov said. The proposed changes had already been entered into the new city plan for the borough, which would be subject of a public hearing on February 24 2009.

Student organisation SROKSOS, one of the initiators of recent protest in front of Parliament, said the changes to the city plan would result in the maximum buildup area being used.

The report presented by Borissov would be sent on February 16 to the Directorate for National Construction Supervision (DNCS), after which it would start procedures to remove illegal buildings. Copies of the report would also be sent to the Ministry of Education and Sofia’s Prosecutor’s Office.

Borissov announced a second round of inspections would be helt, this time of retail establishments.

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