Residents of the apartment block Arco Iris in Puente de Don Manuel, in the municipality of Alcaucín, have been protesting again following 12 years during which they have not had legal electricity meters. The group even suffered a long period without power in 2014 when Endesa cut off the supply, but were finally able to be reconnected, albeit on a temporary basis.
The problem appears to centre on the transformer required to connect the block of 61 apartments to the national grid. Alcaucín Town Hall says that in 2007, after the block was completed and residents moved in with first occupation licences, it was found that part of the construction is in a zone earmarked for public installations. This meant that the power supplier was not legally able to install the transformer.
The residents themselves paid out over €120,000 five years to have a transformer installed, but some insurance companies are reported to be refusing cover because of its unclear status. Not surprisingly, this is a major problems when apartments within the block are changing hands.
The owners say they are “totally desperate” to be continually living in a legal limbo and say that neither Alcaucín’s mayor nor the regional ombudsman has so far been able to help them. They continue to stage protests as they say they are “continually in fear” of losing their power supplies again.
However, mayor Mario Blancke told reporters last month that work is underway to legalise the block, as well as others in the municipality which find themselves in similar situations. He added that he will have the support of the provincial government in reaching a solution.