Land reclamation plans continue to develop

The Minister of State for Monaco announced in a press statement at the end of September that the planned land extension into the sea would go ahead.

Five plans have been short listed and financing is now being reviewed. It's expected that the winning team will be announced some time between Christmas this year and February 2009 and it's also hoped that a Monegasque company will be involved.

Monaco is no stranger to land reclamation. Prince Albert's father, Rainier III clearly deserved his nickname the Builder Prince. He realised that more than gambling and tourism were needed to support and develop the economy. Since it was impossible to extend into France, the only solution was to reclaim land from the sea. First, the Larvotto beach district was created in the early 1960s, then the Fontvieille industrial area, increasing the Principality's surface area by approximately a fifth. More recently, Port Hercule has been extended to welcome larger cruise ships on one side, and to provide land for a new Yacht Club on the other.

The construction of the new spit of land continues the Principality's development and will increase Monaco's surface area again by an estimated 10 hectares. For more information, the government has created a website dedicated to the project called Urbanization on the Sea.

UPDATE: Check our report on developments to this story.