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Friday, July 1, 2022

Judge blocks 7-tower complex in Mérida’s north

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Carlos Rosado van der Gracht
Carlos Rosado van der Gracht
Born in Mérida, Carlos Rosado van der Gracht is a Mexican/Canadian blogger, photographer and adventure expedition leader. He holds degrees in multimedia, philosophy and translation from universities in Mexico, Canada and Norway. Sign up for the Yucatán Roundup, a free newsletter, which delivers the week's top headlines every Monday.
A rendering depicts Infiniti, a large luxury housing project that was planned for Mérida’s north but has now been scrapped. Photo: Courtesy

Yucatán’s fourth district judge has ruled that a planned seven-tower luxury residential complex is unsustainable.

As a result, Judge Díaz Urrutia ordered the project to be scrapped and declared all existing permits null and void.

City Hall says it agrees with the ruling and has directed its sustainability office to place greater scrutiny on similar projects. 

The ruling comes as a victory for the residents of the Monterreal neighborhood in Mérida’s northeast.

Ever since the project was first announced, people living in the area worried that such a development would be untenable and took legal action against the development company. 

Concerns had to do with inadequate road, water, and power infrastructure, as well as deforestation. 

But concerns regarding transparency and how exactly the project got approved in the first place were also center stage. 

Earlier: Tensions flare over plans for Mérida’s new stadium

“We don’t understand how the city can approve upwards of 250 new tower apartment units in an area of only 39,000 square meters. This project would have dire consequences for families in neighborhoods such as Montalbán, Monterreal, Montecristo, and others. The north of the city is oversaturated with traffic as it is,” neighborhood spokesman Yusef Lara said in February 2021.

The residential project in question, Infiniti Mérida, was to consist of seven towers, a clubhouse, a swimming pool, and a large artificial lake.

The north of Mérida is not the only part of the city where zoning rules have been a hot topic. Residents in the Centro have long complained about loud bars and restaurants opening up on streets that had previously been entirely residential.

Advocates of responsible city planning say that the suspension of the projects is a triumph, as it establishes an important legal precedent going forward.

The decision could affect other controversial construction projects within the city, such as the Estadio Sustentable.

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