“Vodovod i kanalizacija” PUC has rejected a request of the investor company NEPI Rockcastle to be granted extension of the permit for release of excess underground water from the Promenada Shopping Centre construction site into the sewage system. The investors from NEPI claim they have no information about such a decision and that the general public will soon be informed about everything.
The permit to pump out excess underground water during ground works, which was previously obtained by NEPI from “Vodovod i kanalizacija” PUC expired on 1st October 2018, after which a request for extension was submitted. However, at the end of September “Vodovod i kanalizacija” decided not to extend the permit, even though the works were still in progress.
As the memo sent by this company to the investor in the Promenada Shopping Centre states, a visit to the site showed that the facility was in the final stage and about to be set in motion and that consequently “there is no more an option to release excess underground water into the sewage system of the city of Novi Sad on the construction site.”
The memo also states that in accordance with the assessment, this company is unable to agree to extend the permit for releasing excess underground water from the site in question into the sewage system of the city, neither during the requested period, nor in the future.
Why NEPI Rockcastle asked for this extension in the first place, when the works were in the final stage, as it is stated in the memo, remains to be clarified.
Tina Mijovic from the PR department of NEPI says that she has no information to share other than the statement issued two weeks ago, in which this company denied that the safety of the citizens of Novi Sad was jeopardized in any way.
“If we issue a new statement, all of you will surely receive it. There is nothing more I can say at this moment,” she said in a brief phone conversation with VOICE and added that she did not have any information whether the decision of the “Vodovod i kanalizacija” would reflect on the future construction works and the deadline for their completion.
Namely, the League of Social Democrats of Vojvodina, “Gradjanska Vojvodina” coalition of NGOs and the opposition parties in Novi Sad issued announcements in which they appeal to the competent bodies in Novi Sad and the investors in the Promenada Shopping Centre to solve the problem related to underground water as soon as possible, since it is threatening to endanger the normal daily lives of the citizens. According to their claims, pumping large quantities of underground water into the sewage system could jeopardize its normal functioning, water supply, as well as the buildings in the Liman residential area and its vicinity.
After that, the mayor of Novi Sad Milos Vucevic announced a “for-cause” inspection of the Promenada construction site, saying that “no-one is in danger, nor would the city ever do or allow something like that.” However, we have still not received any results of the announced inspection.
At the end of last week, Vucevic talked to the Radio-Televison of Vojvodina and said that a building inspection team visited the site and “established that the works were progressing in accordance with the building permit.” He added that “Promenada will not be issued a use permit until all the works have been completed.”
Mladen Savatović (VOICE)