A day before the scheduled protest began the demolition of a landmark swimming complex in Varna

A day before the scheduled February 1 civil protest in defense of the iconic Varna “Mladost House” excavators entered the complex and began its demolition.

This was reported to the police and the media by citizens living nearby. Apart from the demolition of the complex, they were also worried by the fact that it had started next to the parked cars in the neighborhood without any prior information about the start of the demolition works.

According to residents near the complex, law enforcement officials who arrived on a tip-off said the workers had all the necessary documents.

The saga of the demolition of “Dom Mladost”, on the site of which the private investor who bought the complex plans to build an apartment building, has been developing for several months.

Last summer, the news of the demolition organized dozens of citizens of Varna to protest for hours. It reached the public after tenants of the building were given notices to vacate by June 20. The unexpected announcement provoked representatives of sports schools and parents of children who train in the complex to express their discontent.

For years, people with health problems have been training and being treated in the mineral pool of Dom Mladost. There are medical rooms, massages, fitness, rehabilitation.

The complex is the only place in Varna, proudly calling itself “sea capital”, where there is an indoor pool suitable for small children, as well as for rehabilitation of children with special needs.

After several protests, litigation began, and citizens demanded the demolition permit be revoked until they were completed. Then, lawyer Maria Dimitrova reported that 4,000 signatures had been collected in defense of the Mladost House, but the petition submitted to the Municipality had disappeared.

To quell the tension, a representative of the developer showed the project. “Dom Mladost”, built 36 years ago, will become “Dom Mladost Medical SPA”, its designer Krasimira Kostova said at a press conference.

The complex will be located on 9392 sq.m., with an area of 32 000 sq.m. It will have 2 indoor and 3 outdoor swimming pools, SPA, spa, rehabilitation and medical center, dental offices, pharmacy, Kostova explained. The height of the residential blocks will be between 8 and 12 floors.

According to the investor’s plans, the new complex will be built within 2 years once the project is completed and approved and a building permit is issued. The investor is foreign, and the legal entity is Dom Mladost Ltd, it was also revealed during the presentation.

The citizens present, however, expressed that they did not trust the investor and had suspicions that everything would turn into a gated residential complex, inaccessible to them.

I have made a commitment to various organizations and associations that there will be water in “Dom Mladost” and it will be accessible to all citizens, children and people who are in need for rehabilitation procedures, said the chief architect of Varna, Viktor Buzev, who explained that he is now familiarizing himself with the project, but that he will not sign a plan in which “Dom Mladost” does not perform the functions it has performed so far.

The inter-branch Association “To Save Mladost House” is organizing a new protest. This time dissatisfied citizens will gather in front of the Regional Inspectorate for Environment and Water (RIEW) in Varna in defense of Dom Mladost and its mineral waters. The protest is scheduled for tomorrow 01.02.21 (Tuesday) in front of the building of the Regional Inspectorate of Environmental Protection.

“We call on the institutions to exercise their power and stop the current plundering of our natural wealth – the mineral waters of Varna. Just a few days after our protest and demands for the preservation of Mladost House as a social and health spa with common access, heavy construction equipment is being brought in and it is being demolished. The building has been fenced off and is being demolished while there are court proceedings, prosecution files, ownership disputes, and the mineral water concession from the Municipality has not been terminated. We will draw the attention of the RIEW to the destruction of the pipeline system supplying the borehole to the Mladost House, the removal of the booster pumps to the fountain and the stoppage of the entire supply of the unique thermal water, an exclusive state property,” the organizers’ appeal states.

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