Penta plans development at the Nusle brewery

The protected brewery building will be at the center of a new project

Business conglomerate Penta Investments bought the site of a former brewery in Prague's Nusle neighborhood, and they plan to build a Kč 2 billion project with some 450 flats. A historical property on the site will be preserved and likely have shops and offices as well as some flats. Construction could start in 3 years, but that depends on how talks go with city district authorities and with preservationists. The brewery building is protected national heritage.

Penta, owned by Czech businessman Marek Dospiva and Slovaks Jaroslav Haščák, Juraj Herko, Martin Kúšik and Jozef Oravkin, have completed the acquisition of the site after a year and a half of negotiations.

Penta's Michal Nečesánek, who is in charge of the project, said three hectares from three different owners are being combined, and the company now has whole area needed for the complex. The project is just in its beginning stages. The largest part of the property was acquired from Prosperita holding. Penta group did not disclose what it paid for any of the properties it will be using.

Penta has a general idea of how to develop the historical brewery building, but that actual plan depends on negotiations with preservationists. The developer has not yet revealed a concrete proposal.

The historical building will offer some 10,000 square meters of usable space. Penta hopes to use it for shops and services for residents on the ground floor, and some flats and nontraditional office spaces on the upper floors.

Other buildings on the site that are not part of protected national heritage such as warehouses and garages will be demolished to make space for new apartment buildings with a total of 350 to 400 flats, though that is subject to change.

Penta still has to come up with a specific plan and then do an environmental impact assessment. After that the project needs zoning approval and building permits. The process should take three years before construction starts.

Smooth negotiations with preservationists are the Prague 4 district are key to keeping the project in its projected time frame. These talks should start in the coming days. The protected building takes up about one-third of the project area.

The plan also involves a renewal of infrastructure. A new mall or plaza could be built in the area of the brewery building, and a street that used to run through the area would be renewed.

Access to the area will also have to be discussed. Currently, there is one entrance to the area, an east gate, but Penta would like to see four entry points including a crossing over the Botič. These changes would also involve preservationists.

The Nusle brewery figures into the plot of the musical play Fidlovačka, which also contains the Czech national anthem “Kde domov můj.” The first brewery on the site was in 1694, but it has been rebuilt many times, notable in 1876, 1929 and 1935. The brewery gate, with representations of beer barrels, also survives. The brewery has been a listed cultural monument since 2000.

Penta was founded in Slovakia in 1994. Penta Investments sold the Florentinum office complex in Prague, it's first development completed in the Czech Republic, to Chinese investment group CEFC in 2015 for a reported Kč 7.7 billion.

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