by Staff Reporter
THE controversial expansion of Palma's Son Sant Joan airport now depends on the city council, which has to adapt the PGOU, the general development plan, so that the extra land can be assigned to it.

But the process has been held up for the past year.
When the Airport Master Plan was approved in 2001 the city council was obliged by law to modify the PGOU to adapt it to the Plan. The previous council started the necessary paper work immediately, and once approved, it was posted for public inspection so that objections could be lodged.

But then the electoral campaign intervened, and in view of the thousands of objections, the new council decided not to do anything.
If and when it does take up the subject again, it will have to start by replying to all the objections before giving provisional approval. Then, the modification to the PGOU must be sent to the Council of Majorca, which has the last word in planning. In principle, if the law obliges the other administrations to adapt to the expansion of the airport, the Council will be unable to oppose the plans. But if by that time its Territorial Plan for Majorca is approved, it could lead to a conflict between the central and Balearic governments, as its Plan specifically bans any expansion of the airport unless it is for environmental improvement, civil defence or military interest. The Master Plan calls for the addition of one million square metres, which would affect the Pla de Sant Jordi.

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