Although the project has been underway for three yearsthe approval in the Colonia Departmental Board of the plan contract last friday april 29 implies the formal authorization for the beginning of the works of a millionaire city project, which It will be developed within a period of 10 years but it seeks to have the first inhabitants from next year.
The project +Colonia aims to generate a pole of the knowledge economy industry in Colonia del Sacramento, announced that they will start the works after the endorsement of the colonial departmental government. The initiative seeks become a city that brings together technology companies from a natural environment, sustainable policies and the fastest internet connectivity in the region in a 500-hectare property in the eastern wing of the department.
“This is a project to extend Colonia and take advantage of its unique geographical location to generate a hub for the knowledge industry that attract young people for its ability to connect them with technology, with their peers and with nature. Retaining talent is one of the great challenges facing large technology companies that have been emerging in Argentina and Uruguay: +Colonia wants to provide an ideal environment and vibrant culture for young people to choose to stay and have a sustainable quality of life in every sense”, said Geraldine Assmus, CEO of +Colonia.
The start with US$ 100 million
+Colonia has projected investments in this first stage for about US$ 100 million and may involve several hundred million in a decade to house some 30,000 inhabitants, which will be added gradually from the arrival of more than 50 companies projected will be incorporated into that property.
Developers such as Eidic Y ArgenconsBesides of Gómez Platero international study in town planning. It is estimated that the project will generate 6 thousand jobs in the knowledge economyin addition to another 2 thousand in construction and services. For the first stage, the calculation is approximately 600 jobs, the company reported.
+Colonia will also have businesses, shops and educational institutions complementary to the available offer with Colonia del Sacramento, with which it will be geographically and culturally integrated.
The more than 500 hectares where +Colonia will be developed include seven kilometers of natural coastline with white sands, two quarries and a lagoon. In addition, it includes forests and nature that will be maintained through an environmentally friendly construction policy.
The lands have belonged for more than 30 years to Carlos Bastitta, an Argentine businessman who has lived in Uruguay for 15 years and sought to generate a development that could empower Colonia and its community. In 2018, his son Eduardo and other businessmen and leaders of the River Plate entrepreneurial world —such as the developer Meliton Gonzalez del Solar and the technological reference Francis Okecki— They saw that they could invite companies from the knowledge industry to be part of it.
This will be the streets in +Colonia.
“The companies in the sector are interested because they see that the project contemplates fundamental technological needs, it is minutes from cities such as Buenos Aires, Punta del Este and Montevideo and, at the same time, it is designed so that talent, the main differential of companies, can be happy and motivated,” Assmus said.
In this sense, the city is born from the inspiration in the values of the new generations: freedom, diversity, inclusion and respect for the environment. From there, it establishes two axes that run through all planning, which are sustainability and the use of technology to develop a smart city.
“We seek to use developments such as blockchain, artificial intelligence and the Internet of things, to provide individual and collective solutions to the inhabitants. The city will have its own brain, a data center that will learn the habits of citizens, and from them it will generate algorithms to make the city more sustainable: for example, it will optimize the use of energy, public lighting or the collection service” , exemplified Francisco Okecki, executive director at +Colonia.
It is located in the east wing of the department.
From the point of view of sustainability, +Colonia will have different networks for drinking water and gray water —not potable but useful for irrigation and other needs— generating a double positive impact on the use, consumption and purification of water. Mobility will also be anchored in this value, prioritizing walking on green trails and the use of community bikes and electric skateboards.
The new city includes in its planning green public spaces; circuits for sport; recycling facilities; internet of things to plan the operation of technology in the home; resource efficiency and therefore also in expenses, and many other advantages that can be developed with the community.
The citizen participation is one of the premises of the project, which will be promoted through technology blockchain for the democratic and decentralized decision-making. Thus, each citizen of +Colonia will have a token that allows them to vote on simple decisions, such as how to make the most of a public space. +Colonia is conceived as a city that will be co-created by those who live there to also give it an authentic cultural life.