The Municipality Council of Blagoevgrad will vote on the proposal for a change in the town construction plan tomorrow, Feb. 28. The American University in Bulgaria's Interim President, Dr. David Evans, sent a letter to the town officials back in the summer of 2019 regarding the issue. AUBG Daily would like to share with you the official statement of the university and the alumni association:
OFFICIAL STATEMENT OF THE AMERICAN UNIVERSITY IN BULGARIA AND THE AUBG ALUMNI ASSOCIATION
The American University in Bulgaria and the AUBG Alumni Association express serious concern regarding the proposed changes to building a property located near the campus of the prestigious school in Blagoevgrad.
At its regular meeting tomorrow, the Municipal Council of Blagoevgrad is expected to vote on a change in the construction plan of buildings near the Skaptopara I dormitory. The proposal provides for buildings that are over 25 meters high and just 15 meters away from the dorms. AUBG's faculty, students and staff fear that this will bring constant noise and increased traffic on “Svoboda Bachvarova” Street which will have an adverse impact on both the students’ learning process and the campus life.
"We are concerned that the proposed change will disrupt our students' learning process and will eliminate the green space between the dormitory and the planned construction," said AUBG Interim President Dr. David Evans. "The cozy and calm atmosphere, the amenities, buildings, and green spaces contribute to the modern look of the city. Many residents and guests of Blagoevgrad often visit the campus to enjoy the wonderful conditions that AUBG has created. Now with the attempt to change this construction project, they are at risk of being lost forever.”
AUBG is the largest employer in Blagoevgrad with nearly 300 employees. Its investments in one of the most modern university campuses in Southeastern Europe, as well as in the overall development of the university amount to nearly $60 million dollars. The prestigious university, which regularly tops the ratings in Bulgaria, has a favorable impact on the economy of Blagoevgrad - it works with many local companies, and students, faculty, and staff are among the active users at the local level. Last but not least, AUBG contributes significantly to the good image and the international connections of the city.
"Our position is that the provisions of the current construction and regulatory plan of 2000 must be complied with," said Jordan Karabinov, president of the AUBG Alumni Association. "This plan provides for the preservation of green spaces and parking spaces and does not include the development of tall and massive buildings. A construction process according to the 2000 plan will be less disruptive to the students’ learning process. We are convinced that through dialogue and joint efforts, we can find a sensible solution that meets both the interests of the property owner and the specific needs of AUBG.”
*AUBG Daily will continue observing the case and will report back after further investigation.
Leave a Comment
Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *