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mil disculpa, no estaba en Español




http://centralamericatoday.com/e7/industry.html

Industry: Cities within cities
Gated communities are raising the standard of living changing the face of urban Central America

By Blake Schmidt
Managua​

thirty-six years ago, Nicaragua´s capital city was rattled by a devastating earthquake that left it in shambles. Nearly four decades and two wars later, Managua is going through a period of reconstruction. As has been the case in many other Central American capitals, the most popular new developments in this city are the gated communities that line its outskirts. These communities offer privacy, parking, streetlights, sidewalks, and 24-hour security. Some even come with heliports and Jacuzzis.

“There are many Nicaraguans who [had] left the country for the United States, now buying second homes here,” said Marvin Quintanilla, manager of Managua-based Sinergia Construction Company. “Perhaps they hope to return one day.” Quintanilla´s company is working on a massive 2,400-residence project called Ciudad San Sebastián, a walled-in development that will include a church, commercial center and bus terminal.

These communities are not only attractive to overseas real estate investors—many of whom only come to the country periodically and value the security that the communities offer—but also to Central Americans living abroad, who are finding that gated communities can make for affordable investments, especially now that the region has enjoyed relative peace and stability for nearly two decades. These “cities within cities” are changing the urban landscapes not only in Managua, but throughout Central America, particularly in capital cities and along the region´s coasts, where development has been driven by foreign investment in recent years. They are attracting foreign attention and restructuring society in a way that few have foreseen.

In many ways, the gated communities are taking on services and projects that have long been considered infrastructure projects for local governments. But as Central American governments try to keep up with fast-growing development and investment, developers are deciding to go ahead and foot the bill, while playing up this tropical region´s strengths in the real-estate industry—such as its lush forests.

“We have plans so people can walk and run—big green areas,” said Managua-based Sun Real Estate´s Frank Martínez, whose company is developing several gated communities.

In Panama City, for instance, the largest gated communities are popping up on the Costa del Este, on the coast just 15 minutes from the international airport, where homes start at $300,000 and go as high as $1 million. And the city´s former Canal Zone area—now the new site of the American Embassy—is becoming home to gated “garden cities” situated among the lush tropical forest.

“I believe there are two main reasons folks buy in gated communities,” said Dick Tanker, editor of Intertica.com, a Web site that specializes in Costa Rican properties. “The first being security and peace of mind, a lock-and-leave home. The second is most projects offer total outside landscaping.”

Such communities can be found in the wealthier outskirts of San José like Escazú and Santa Ana; they´ve also become mainstays in Pacific beach communities like Tamarindo and Jacó. Globalization and immigration are increasingly cited as culprits in the recent crime wave that has affected this once peaceful and military-free country, which has increased security demands that are now being met primarily by gated communities.

The same goes in Guatemala City. “Urban developments that have a gate at the entrance are very popular in Guatemala due to the lack of security that exists in the capital,” said María Luisa Schlesinger, a Re/Max real estate agent in Guatemala City. She added that guards at the entrance will request identification from those trying to enter the community, explaining “it minimizes the risk of armed assaults in the homes.”

Security and style

Carlos Amador, President of Discover Nica, says privacy and security are the main reason buyers go for gated communities, but in the upper-end of the market, it´s also about exclusivity.

Amador´s Monte Carlo development outside Managua includes all the standard gated-community amenities—water well, 24-hour security, landscaping, electricity—as well as additional perks like a heliport. “At this moment three out of four owners either have their own helicopter or always use one,” Amador said.

Though some real estate insiders say the ex-guerilla Ortega may be scaring away foreign investment in high-end gated communities, Dr. Dennis Rogers, a fellow at the London School of Economics who has followed urban development in Managua, is skeptical. Rodgers, who has studied the rise of gated communities in Managua, says the gated community market in Nicaragua will likely continue to bloom. Several high-up members of the administration of President Daniel Ortega have interests in the sector.

University of Virginia professor Theodore Caplow, who has studied urban development in Guatemala City, said the rise of gated communities in Guatemala City have taken on various infrastructure necessities in developed countries that the state has traditionally been expected to provide: paved streets, security, lighting, and potable water. “The main impact might be the rejection of more traditional types of unequal housing,” said Caplow, pointing out that urban development in Central American capitals has long been defined by spatial segregation between classes. According to him, the gated communities could lead to more class segregation as they generally cater to high-income levels.

However, a new trend suggests that the gated-community model can also be modified to target those at lower income levels. Around Managua and Granada, prices for gated community homes now start as low as $12,000. “It can be done by many low-income families,” said Roberto Lacayo, president of the Nicaraguan Construction Chamber. His company Lacayo Fiallos is developing a gated community near Managua with homes starting at $12,000 and going up to $15,000.

“Such developments could certainly benefit the still very small but growing professional (middle) class, which until now has often lived in conditions only one step up from the poor,” Rodgers said in an e-mail response. He said Central America isn´t the first place to experience a “trickle down” of gated communities from rich to poor, and cites South Africa and Brazil as examples of countries with similarly scalable developments.

Martínez said the lower income gated communities are popular among Nicaraguans who left the country during the 1980s, but are now interested in returning as the region has become more stable in recent years. Central Americans living abroad promise to be a major boon to investment here in years to come, especially in regions where large swaths of the population left in response to political turmoil that has since stabilized.

Many relocated to the United States, where suburban development gave way to a style of housing development that has become a “standard” in Central America now that Central Americans living abroad have begun sending their dollars back to the region, Martínez said.

“I have a number of Nica friends living in the United States who are buying lots and will soon have a beautiful home [in the region],” said Manuel Salazar, a Nicaraguan-American living in California who recently purchased a home in the Valle Santa Rosa development north of Managua. “It´s a project aimed at professionals, and also those Nicaraguans that live outside of Nicaragua and that would like to have a little investment in their country.”
 

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A bordo del Frontereño!
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5,335 Posts
You're right!

Las ciudades dentro de ciudades son lo ultimo, todo està dentro de la comunidad cerrada. Pasaron de los pequeños condominios horizontales a grandes residenciales. Me parece que hay varias de esas en Escazu.
 

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Arriba las 2as ciudades!!
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La verdad a mí personalment no me convencen mucho estas nuevas comunidades cerradas... irónikment vivo en una, pero solía hacerlo en una q no era y pues creo q prefiero la anterior a la actual... :nuts:

Sin embargo creo q es la solución q las urbanizadoras ofrecen sobre todo x razones d cguridad... como la nota menciona personalment creo q lo q c logra con est tipo d complejos es remarcar más la brecha d diferencias sociales q d x sí ya es grand en nuestras ciudades... :eek:hno:

No mencionan a El Salvador... :( ... jejejeje
 

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Neurotico Lunatico
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Las unicas residenciales cerradas en SM serian:
El Sitio I y II
Riverside
Riverside North
Riverside Gardens
 

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Arriba las 2as ciudades!!
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4,706 Posts
Ahora q también lo pienso... tampoco hac mención del fenómeno q al menos en SS c está dando q son las colonias q fueron originalment urbanizadas como espacios abiertos y ahora los vcinos c estan uniendo para hacerlos circuitos cerra2... :nuts:... no c si también será algo q pasa en las d+ ciudades d CA... :nuts:
 

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Agente de cambio
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En guate abundan... son demasiadas, incontables! pero creo que todo eso empezó aqui porque el guatemalteco es muy mmm.. podria decirse egocentrico, siempre queremos ser los primeros y los únicos y esos proyectos empezaron a venderse como sinonimo de "exclusividad".
 

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A bordo del Frontereño!
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Mi estimado Zven eso se da en todas las ciudades centroamericanas, es comun ver comunidades cerradas, mas no tipo "ciudad cerrada" eso si es poco comun, solo las que dice el articulo,en algunas partes de Escazú y Santa Ana. No sabia que tambien se veia en Jacó, pero era de esperarse.
 

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Je suis tout à vous
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Yo recientemente me mude a unas de esas nuevas comunidades cerradas aquí en el área de Otay Ranch en San Diego y ps aunque es seguro, te hace sentir mas seguro. Lo mismo me imagino que pasa en las ciudades de Centro América, lo que prefieren es la seguridad, porque de que sirve vivir en un área exclusiva si es peligroso.
 

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En guate abundan... son demasiadas, incontables! pero creo que todo eso empezó aqui porque el guatemalteco es muy mmm.. podria decirse egocentrico, siempre queremos ser los primeros y los únicos y esos proyectos empezaron a venderse como sinonimo de "exclusividad".
Tenes razon, cuando iba en el bus, desde muy antes de entrar en la ciudad ya habia contado unas 15 colonias de esas que estaban en construccion, mas las que ya estaban construidas, un monton!
 
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