Land management and construction of social and affordable housing


Access to housing has been and is one of the major concerns of the Barcelona Metropolitan Area (AMB) and a key to promote social cohesion. Guaranteeing the right to decent and suitable housing is, more than ever before, an absolute priority.

In recent years, economic crisis and energy challenges have set out a new scenario for housing policies within the metropolitan area. In this context, the AMB has exercised its competencies in land policies through IMPSOL, the Metropolitan Institute of Land Development and Property Management, a public body with its own legal personality, which ensures citizenship accessibility to social and affordable housing, serving at the same time the duality between the local needs of the municipalities and the strategies of the metropolitan territory.

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IMPSOL development
IMPSOL development in Montgat

During the period 2011-2015, being able to maintain the supply of affordable, quality and sustainable housing has been a big challenge: a total of 892 homes in 13 developments have been managed, counting those that have already been delivered and those under construction or in an advanced planning stage.

Social Housing Developments
Municipality Development Area Homes Architects
Finished developments
Cornellà de Llobregat Ctra. Esplugues/Av. St Ildefons Ctra. Esplugues 84 José Antonio Marín
Esplugues de Llobregat C. Mestre Joan Corrales Plaza i Janés 20 Arquitectura Produccions, SL
Montgat C. Pompeu Fabra Turó del Sastre - 18 F 40 J. R. Pascuets and Mònica Mosset
Sant Andreu de la Barca Pg. Parlament de Catalunya A8-A10 54 Nogué-Onzain-López, arquit. SLP
Total finished homes 198
Ongoing developments
Gavà Av. Juan Carlos I Pla Ponent 143 Brullet de Luna i Associats, SLP
Esplugues de Llobregat C. Esperança Martí Pep Ventura 17 Montero-Gràcia arquitectes, SCP
Montgat C. Joanot Martorell Turó del Sastre - 18D 40 Maria Isabel Bennasar Félix
Total ongoing homes 200
Planned developments
Molins de Rei Les Guardioles Les Guardioles 174 Pascual Ausió Fernández, SCP
Montgat C. Sant Feliu Turó del Sastre - 18J 42 Xavier Vendrell and Data AE
Montgat Av. Can Serra Turó del Sastre - 18C 62 Calvet & Frontado Arquitectos, SLP
Sant Andreu de la Barca C. Josep Pla Josep Pla - Sant Llop 37 Harquitectes Area Productiva, SLP
Sant Boi de Llobregat C. Baldiri Net i Figueres Saló Central (H1) 84 Estudi Massip-Bosch Arq. SLP
Sant Boi de Llobregat C. Baldiri Net i Figueres Saló Central (H2) 95 J. Herreros, M.Benedito and M. Sanz
Total planned homes 494
Total homes IMPSOL management 2011-2015 892
  • Ecohabitat project
    Development of 54 homes in Sant Andreu de la Barca
    Besides, the constant updating of regulations, the need to reduce energy demand and the changes in functional and occupancy requirements as a result of socio-economic changes, have made the housing issue a project in continuous evolution and review.

    Therefore, in order to effectively target these advances, the cities of Toulouse, Lisbon and Barcelona have driven a project called Ecohabitat, which encourages transnational cooperation for technological innovation and social practices in sustainable housing.The aim of this project is to improve the quality of life of people living in metropolitan homes, both to achieve maximum technical, space and comfort performance and to ensure maximum attention and the best service in all process that accompanies the purchase of a home, from commercialisation to after-sales.

    With a total budget of €1,257,080 and an AMB contribution of €134,687 (75% funded by EU subsidies), this project has made possible:
    • The transfer of knowledge and experience.
    • A new harmonised calculation of the concentration of emissions produced by buildings.
    • The creation of specific, efficient and economically viable methodologies of energy rehabilitation for residential metropolitan stocks.
    • The implementation of more effective policies for urban development and innovation in the area of public housing.

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    Ecohabitat project
IMPSOL development
Development in Mestre Joan Corrales street, in Esplugues de Llobregat | Photograph: Jordi Surroca

In the economic context that has marked the period 2011-2015, public local companies working on land development and housing have had to cope with budgetary constraints affecting public assets of land and housing of local ownership. In this context, the AMB has developed a strategy to support these organisations, so that they can strengthen their operations and preserve the model of metropolitan territorial cohesion.

Within the Plan to support town councils, the programme to support municipal housing companies considers thst the IMPSOL can sign contracts with the option to purchase certain assets of these entities. Revenues that stem from these contracts guarantee the financing needs to keep the local public heritage of land and housing, and also to implement new developments and construction of social housing projects. At the end of the agreed term, companies should decide whether they buy back the right to the AMB/IMPSOL or the sale is carried out for the price initially agreed.

The programme concerns the following 100% municipally owned companies: GTI (Gavà), Procornellà (Cornellà de Llobregat), Promusa (Sant Cugat del Vallès,) Promunsa (Sant Just Desvern), VIMED (Viladecans) and Gramepark (Santa Coloma de Gramenet).

The programme implementation is responsibility of IMPSOL, a directly managed body of the AMB.
Metropolitan Institute of Land Development and Property Management (IMPSOL) (2012-2015)
2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Land 6,820,610.57 0.00 2,389,555.65 0.00 9,210,166.22
Urbanisation 1,693,646.33 429,945.91 150,000.00 1,650,000.00 3,923,592.24
Building 13,865,463.04 15,413,175.64 1,407,644.87 13,736,101.50 44,422,385.05
Plan to support municipal companies 0.00 8,469,327.53 12,531,839.13 6,977,961.39 27,979,128.05
Total 22,379,719.94 24,312,449.08 16,479,039.65 22,364,062.89 85,535,271.56