Former United States President Bill Clinton has joined the ranks of Panama Pacifico enthusiasts! Clinton praised Panama Pacifico’s development plan during a recent visit to Panama. The former president was in the nation’s capital to deliver a lecture entitled “Embracing Our Common Humanity” at the new Riu Plaza Panama Hotel, where more than a thousand people attended the event.
The Clinton Climate Initiative (CCI) recognizes projects around the world that address the dual challenge of climate change and urbanization. Clinton’s foundation created the Climate Positive Development Program to meet these challenges by encouraging and supporting sustainability in large-scale urban development.
Launched in May 2009, the program supports large-scale developments—like Panama Pacifico —that demonstrate how urban areas can grow in ways that are “climate positive” and reduce CO2 emissions.
Panama Pacifico was selected by the CCI as one of just 17 initial projects, which will eventually allow nearly one million people worldwide to live and work in climate positive communities. The other 16 projects are located in countries across the globe, including Australia, Canada, Sweden, the UK and the U.S.
According to the CCI, “A key highlight of Panama Pacifico is the ecological sustainability plan…efforts in restoring and protecting nearly 1,400 hectares of wetlands and other native habitats, as well as integrating natural processes with their innovative storm water management plan will act as a tool for sequestering large amounts of carbon….”
Panama Pacifico is the largest Special Economic Area (SEA) in Latin America. Master planner London & Regional Panama is developing the project at the site of a former U.S. military base known as Howard. Adjacent to the Panama Canal’s Pacific entrance, the SEA boasts the region’s most strategic location.
The Panama Pacifico master plan calls for everything from industrial and logistics parks to residential communities and a bustling, convenient Town Center. In short, everything anyone could possibly need to work, live and play in the region’s most modern, livable, and strategic “green” location.
Construction in the community is progressing quickly. Panama Pacifico’s International Business Park (IBP) already boasts five completed buildings, including retailers like Mailboxes Etc. and Subway, and a new operational medical facility called Care Express. Urban-planned and designed by world-renowned Ware Malcomb Architects, the IBP will feature 16 Class-A office buildings and more than 140,000 square meters of leasable space.
The new PanAmerica Corporate Center (PCC) in Panama Pacifico offers state-of-the-art logistics, distribution and manufacturing warehouses. Here, leased, build-to-suit, and company-specific facilities are available from 1,000 to 50,000 square meters. Two buildings are open, operating, and 100% leased, and another slated for completion in June is also 100% leased. An additional five buildings are available for pre-leasing; two are scheduled to complete this October and three have space coming online in second quarter 2012.
The IBP and PCC are built to international standards and offer flexible, long-term growth opportunities. Along with local companies, major multinationals like Dell and 3M have flocked to Panama Pacifico to take advantage of these opportunities, along with a host of special benefits that include major legal, tax, and immigration incentives.
According to a Clinton Climate Initiative report: “For those expanding business overseas, retiring in Latin America or simply visiting this beautiful locale, this sustainable, mixed-use business center and residential hub provides a balance of world-class amenities, infrastructure and services.”
The report goes on to highlight Panama Pacifico’s master plan, citing concepts from the international standards of Smart Growth, New Urbanism and sustainable land use, and adding that “the new design includes a healthy jobs-housing balance, ensuring future success and growth in the community and making Panama Pacifico the first of its kind in Latin America.”
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