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Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Białystok. A block of flats overlooking the prison. “No one forced anyone to buy apartments here”

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In Białystok, the construction of a block of flats whose balconies are adjacent to the prison fence finished with barbed wire is being completed. Internet users joke that they will be able to “look and joke”, and the developer argues that residents will not be able to see the prisoners. Although the block is still under construction, all apartments have been sold.

“Nice idea, you will be able to rent balconies for visits”; “An ideal place for morning coffee and reflection on freedom”; “And you can look. And you can joke.”

These are just a few of Internet users' comments about this investment. This is a block of flats currently under construction in Białystok, which is being built right next to the fence of the prison (or rather the detention ward, because the prison ceased to exist here in 2021) at ul. Hetmańska 89.

The block was built right next to the prison fence Tomasz Mikulicz/ tvn24.pl

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SEE: Over a hundred identical houses in a field. Entrance through the “ancient” gate.

Developer: nothing special about it

A photo of a building next to a fence topped with barbed wire causes great emotions, for example on the Facebook profile “Polish Housing Camps”.

– The investment is nearing completion. The block is, of course, constructed in accordance with the law, based on a building permit. There is nothing extraordinary about it. It sometimes happens that housing estates are also built next to correctional facilities or funeral homes. Nobody forced anyone to buy apartments here – says Marta Redlińska-Rogowska from the Białystok company Duet Nieruchomości Marta Redlińska-Rogowska Marek Rogowski, who is an investor here.

The administration building is the closest

He emphasizes that a square meter in this block cost PLN 9,000 and all the apartments have already been sold.

There is a lot of free space between the fence and the nearest prison building Tomasz Mikulicz/ tvn24.pl

– Residents will not have a view from their balconies of the walking area where inmates walk, because the nearest facility on the neighboring plot is the administration building. However, when it comes to the fence, it must be like this, because it is a prison area. Single-family houses are located closer to the building where the inmates are located. There were also houses in the place where our block was built, he emphasizes.

He adds that for several years it has been said that the prison is located at ul. Hetmańska will be moved, but the area will be put up for sale, so it is possible that a housing estate will be built there in the future.

– However, this is not official information – notes Redlińska-Rogowska.

Detention spokesman: no inmates walk directly behind the wall

Second Lieutenant Kamil Glanowski, spokesman for the director of the remand center in Białystok, writes to us in an e-mail that he knows nothing about such plans. However, it confirms that there are no inmates walking directly behind the wall.

On the other side of the plot belonging to the detention center there are single-family houses Tomasz Mikulicz/ tvn24.pl

“There is an internal parking lot of the unit and an administrative building where officers are on duty,” he emphasizes.

However, when it comes to the building where the inmates stay, – as he points out – it will only be visible to residents of the upper floors of the block. He also adds that there is a lot of free space behind the wall bordering the block (in the prison area – editor's note).

Magistrate: there are no prohibitory regulations

Agnieszka Błachowska from the Białystok city hall informs us that there is no spatial development plan, so the building permit (from March 2023) was issued based on the decision on development conditions. This made it possible to implement an investment near the prison.

SEE ALSO: Activist punished by the court for the phrase “patho-developer”. “The first in Poland”

“It should be emphasized that there are no regulations prohibiting such construction. The building wall is placed 4.10 meters from the border of the plot on which the prison is located, balconies – 2.30 meters from the border, in accordance with the applicable technical conditions,” he writes to us in e-mail.

He also adds that the arrest was a party to the proceedings regarding the issuance of development conditions and building permits.

“He did not raise any objections,” Błachowska notes.

The balconies are located 2.30 meters from the plot border Tomasz Mikulicz/ tvn24.pl

Architect: blocks of flats are also being built at busy transport hubs

We also asked architect Mirosław Siemionow from the management board of the Białystok branch of the Association of Polish Architects to comment.

– I noticed this block of flats when I was passing by. I am surprised by such a neighborhood, but in Białystok there are also many examples of apartment blocks that are being built right next to busy transport hubs and people also live in them. As the classic saying goes, I'm still learning, he smiles.

Author:Tomasz Mikulicz

Main photo source: Tomasz Mikulicz/ tvn24.pl

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