The first annual AREI conference, one of the most important real estate events of the year, took place on October 15, 2019 in Bucharest.
Focusing around the idea of transforming cities and building communities, the AREI Conference 2019 brought together the main players of the real estate industry and the most relevant public authorities.
In her opening speech, the AREI President, Ms. Antoanela Comsa, CEO Gran Via talked about the most important achievements during the 2-year activity of the association, emphasizing that AREI has become a relevant voice for the business community of Romania due to its active engagement in all the public policy initiatives impacting the real-estate industry and the overall economy, and an effective discussion partner that brings substance and expertise in its dialogue with the public authorities.
The first panel brought together the AREI partners – representatives of the public authorities that the association worked with closely on various legislative and regulatory initiatives in order to improve the business environment, with a special focus on the real estate sector. The discussions ranged from the topics on the perspectives of the urban planning at the level of Bucharest Municipality and other districts, with insights from Mr. Stefan Dumitrascu, Chief Architect of Bucharest and Mr. Dan Tudorache, Bucharest 1st District Mayor. The most recent developments in the legislation regulating the real estate area, in particular Law 50/1991 on authorization of construction works, have been presented by Mr. Florin Claudiu Roman, President of the Public Administration Committee in the Chamber of Deputies. While Mr. Cezar Soare, Advisor to the Chief Inspector of the State Inspectorate in Constructions talked about the capacity building projects aiming to improve the authorization procedure of the technical documentation at the level of ISC. The Secretary General of the Ministry of Environment, Mr. Teodor Dulceata reflected on the public policy measures for stimulating smart/green constructions and the upcoming obligations for the real estate investors/developers/owners in terms of energy performance of the buildings and the management of waste from construction activities. At the same time, Mr. Sorin Chirita, Bucharest City Manager spoke about the key elements of the Smart City Strategy for Bucharest, while Mr. Andrei Creci, Director General of the Bucharest Transport Operator, emphasized on the objectives of the transport operator in responding to the pace of the infrastructure development and ensuring access to public transportation in all the areas.
The discussions in the second panel focused on the transformation of the cities and the emergence of different communities in Bucharest and other cities in the region, generated due to the real estate projects developed by prominent AREI members. Mr. Florin Furdui, Country Manager Portland Trust, talked about how projects such as Floreasca Park and Oregon Park reshaped the northern area of Bucharest, while Ms. Daniela Badulescu, Country Manager S IMMO Romania, reflected on the impact of The Mark project in reviving the entire surrounding area. An interesting perspective on the new tendencies and best practices in real estate from abroad that are already applied or should be applied in Romania, was shared by Ms. Lori Collin, Director Romania, Lion’s Head, based on her working experience with the US real estate market. Representing the logistics area, Ms. Sinziana Pardhan, Managing Director Romania P3 Logistic Parks, shared the company’s vision on creating better, smart and healthy spaces in order to meet the real needs of their clients and of the communities. Referring to the next steps in line with the AREI mission to create smarter and greener communities, Mr. Geo Margescu, Co-founder & CEO Forte Partners, invited all the AREI members and other interested partners to join the efforts and contribute to the decongesting of traffic in Bucharest, by making available the parking spaces around their office areas for other users in the neighborhood.
The AREI vision to lead by example and to give back to community is reflected in the AREI CSR project with Hope and Home for Children. In this regard, Mr. Robert Ion, Director of Fundraising HHC, delivered a presentation on the house for children from orphanages that shall be built with the financial contribution of the AREI members.