Greek property developer Lamda said on Friday that new obstacles had appeared in its plans to develop the vacant Hellenikon airport site; one of the largest projects on the country’s privatization agenda.
Lamda Development is referring to the Culture ministry declaring a new archaeological area over parts of the airport compound and imposing other restrictions; a move that was an ‘unexpected change in the contractual agreed terms’.
“It is obvious that the investment cannot be materialised as long as continuous setbacks and new obstacles lead to amendments in the development plan in various ways that are not provisioned in the contract,” Lamda said in a stock exchange filing.
The Culture ministry decision means that about 30 hectares of the area has been declared of archaeological importance. The ministry said Lamda should review the height of some buildings.
Lamda said the decision would have a material impact on its plans, because tall buildings were part of the project’s landmark elements. But, it added, Lamda remained committed to the contract it signed with the Greek state.
Backed by Chinese and Gulf funds, Lamda submitted an €8 billion proposal in July to convert the 620-hectare wasteland into a complex of luxury residences, hotels, a yachting marina and casinos in a resort three times the size of Monaco.
But the project has been beset with delays, partly over a long-running row between developers and those who fear it will damage the environment and cultural heritage.