Espace Diamant Property Speculators

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Even some of the locals are against the Espace Diamant. Residents of les Saises have noted speculation in property. The developer, MGM is building and refurbishing luxury apartments. People are also questioning what proportion of aid will be pumped into the resorts and wonder how much of the Rothschild’s groups vast fortune will trickle down to the season workers. Although not strictly part of the project recent work in the Côté Brichou sector of Saises has resulted in the cutting of pistes through woodland.

Finally there are concerns that small stations such as Praz will not be able to follow the development costs in the long term and that the resorts will eventually fall into the hands of the Compagnie des Alpes (CdA) as is happening at Serre Chevalier. The CdA was established by the state run Caisse des Dépôts to restructure and aid French ski resorts facing the challenges of climate change and international competition. The government is currently in the process of privatising the group and a number of communities are worried about the CdA adopting a much more commercial attitude to the running of ski areas. There have been complaints of a lack of transparency in future strategy of the group.

Update August 2006

In fact the management of the Praz sur Arly ski area has been taken over by the Remy Loisirs group which is already present in the area:

The developments in the Mont-Blanc area are continuing to attract attention from evironmental groups. There was a major demonstration during the summer of 2006.

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