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APB puts management of its historic headquarters out to tender for its conversion into a “port-city” interpretation centre

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Palma, 19/11/2019

The Official State Gazette (BOE) today published the decision by the Port Authority of the Balearic Islands (APB) Board of Directors to put out to tender the management of its historic building on the Old Quay in the Port of Palma and its conversion into a “port-city” interpretation centre. The APB’s historic headquarters is currently being remodelled to turn it into a public facility and it will subsequently be run via an administrative concession.

The future interpretation centre is to have several separate areas explaining the history of the ports and their connection with their urban setting. It will also be turned into a meeting point for social and cultural events open to all audiences. Some of its facilities will be set aside for the APB including a newspaper archive, a library, a meeting room for the Board of Directors and an exhibition room about the Balearic Islands’ public ports and lighthouses.

The concessionaire will operate a multipurpose venue in which it will have to schedule and organise a range of artistic and socially relevant events throughout the year aimed at the general public. It will also run a shop for the interpretation centre whose main role will be to publicise port contents by selling books, catalogues and other media promoting the port’s operations and image. Finally, it will provide a bar, restaurant and café service split between the second and third floors covering around 630 square metres and featuring two terraces overlooking Majorca Cathedral and the Bay of Palma.

The concessionaire will be responsible for the maintenance, cleaning, surveillance, control and security of the facilities along with encouraging people to visit the interpretation centre and the APB’s exhibition room. The annual lease charge to be bettered by bidders is €138,871.49 and the concession will last at most fifteen years.

Remodelling by the APB

While the APB’s historic headquarters will be managed indirectly through a concession, the remodelling of the old building is to be carried out by the APB. Acciona Construcción has been awarded the works with public investment coming to almost €5.5 million. The construction plan maintains the building’s entire exterior façade with the exception of the East side which is to be replaced by a large stained-glass window that will also be a vantage point. The neoclassical building now being remodelled is listed and was constructed in 1940. In 1955 it was extended to its current 1,314 square metres of plot. Refurbishment work began in February 2019 and is expected to be completed by summer 2020.

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