We started without any plot of land and with small initial capital. Today, our real estate portfolio covers approximately 150 ha, and the capitalization is over PLN 80 million – says Artur Paszko, Chairman of the Board of Kraków Nowa Huta of the Future SA, in an interview with Bartłomiej Grzankowski.

In recent years plans for the future of Nowa Huta, as reflected in the company’s name, have been widely discussed. What has already been achieved?

Artur Paszko: The first years of the company’s operation required many preparations. Let me recall that as an entity that is to carry out the project on an area of over 700 ha, we started without any plot of land and with small initial capital. Today, after six years of the company’s operation, our real estate portfolio covers approximately 150 ha, with a capitalization of over PLN 80 million. We have started an investment program worth over PLN 100 million, under which the first elements of the entire project are created, ie Przylasek Rusiecki – rest-and-recreation area with auxiliary services and the Economic Activity Zone “Nowa Huta of the Future”. Preparations for the construction of the “Branice” Educational Park have also started.

What measures is the company taking to address the future challenge of climate change?

AP: The topic we take very seriously is the use of renewable energy sources, e.g. the reconstruction of the bathing beach in Przylasek Rusiecki includes the installation of photovoltaic panels and heat pumps. We are also looking forward for the effects of cooperation with AGH, MPEC and the Climate-Energy-Water Management unit. It should result in confirmation of the presence of hot springs in Nowa Huta and their use. Unfortunately, in some cases it will be necessary to cut down trees, mostly wild ones, which have appeared here in recent years, therefore we are already preparing for replacement plantings. But we have also designated green common spaces among the investment plots at Economic Activity Zone. What is important, over 25 percent of the project area has been already reserved strictly for greenery.

What are the smart solutions to be implemented in the project?

AP: Contrary to the sometimes repeated thesis, this English phrase does not only mean the use of new technologies, but also functional solutions. For example: it is important to plan the space well. Today we come back to the philosophy of the fifteen-minute district (city) – a place where everything is at hand. The original, “old” Nowa Huta was designed according to these assumptions. Currently, however, it is a considerable organizational challenge, as it requires the cooperation of many public and private entities. I think that we will be more satisfied when the implementation of the “Kraków – Nowa Huta of the Future” project comes to an end.

A considerable part of the area of the “Kraków Nowa Huta Przyszłości “ project is taken up by land designated for investments in the railway industry and services. How are the works progressing?

AP: Currently, we can say the most about the prospects of the Branice Science and Technology Park, where the creation of the Economic Activity Zone is already underway. We estimate that about 40 investment plots will be built there. We have already received interest from 30 companies. At the same time, we are also discussing with other entrepreneurs who could appear in the rest of the Park. The Krakow-based company Bielenda Kosmetyki Naturalne will have its new headquarters there, among others. The declared value of this project is PLN 64 million.

What are the perspectives for the coming months?

AP: Even before the bathing season, we plan to open a reconstructed recreational area around reservoir no. 1 in Przylasek Rusiecki. It is a place of rest, which was very popular especially in summer. We added a few necessary elements there, but we also tried to preserve the semi-wild nature of this corner of the city. We expect to complete works of Economic Activity Zone at the beginning of next year. Later this year, we schedule geothermal borehole and a construction project for the “Branice” Educational Park, the centre of which will be the Krakow open-air museum.

The text was published in the municipal biweekly Kraków.pl nr 5 (281), 17.03.2021 r.

Also available on the website: Kraków.pl