2005-02-21

University campus or massive new armed compound?

On Tuesday the parliament of Bosnia and Hercegovina will debate the recommendation of the Council of Ministers to sell the previous "Marshal Tito" military barracks ("Maršalka") to the US Government as a site to build a new embassy, reports FENA.

The 44,175 square meter site is being offered at a price of 12,868,503.51 convertible marks (KM). This amounts to about 291.31 KM for a square meter. Anyone who wants to purchase a prime parcel of urban real estate would jump at that price -- if I had been able to buy my apartment for that price, it would have cost about 26,217.90 KM, and would certainly be one of the cheapest little two-bedrooms on the planet, going at about the price of a decent new (non-luxurious) economy car.

But beyond the fact that the government negotiated a phenomenally bad price, it also proposes to sell land that had been foreseen for a badly needed new university campus. Jan Zlatan Kulenović of the Youth Information Agency (OIA) of Bosnia-Hercegovina says that the sale of the campus for a new US Embassy would be "the greatest theft committed against students in the history of BiH." Sarajevo University rector Hasan Muratović will also be seeking to assure that any proceeds from a sale be used for building the promised campus, which had previously been agreed between the government and the University but is not declared in the decision of the Council of Ministers.

1 comment:

Seesaw said...

A propos... The price is ridiculous, US Embassy has a nice spot in this city already, and spent -I guess- more money on protection of present location, than what will be payed for this new piece of property. But the problem is not only that, if US embassy moves there - because of security - nothing more will be built there, and I wonder where and how will the tram go so close to the embassy.
Nothing does surprise me in Sarajevo anylonger!