A state-owned Monegasque property management company has acquired a strategic site in the form of the “Fort de la tête de Chien” previously owned by the French company “Orange” for the price of 13 million Euros, announced the Municipal Council of La Turbie.
The Fort is not only strategic, but it is also a historic place founded in 1870. What will become of this fort, which previously hosted a team of radio engineers and experts from “Orange”?
“We are having discussions in September,” says Jean-Jacques Raffaele, the mayor of La Turbie. “As of today, the new owner cannot do anything with his property. In the future it may be necessary to make changes to the construction plan of the fort. It will all depend on the project which is to be developed and approved, the main criterion being its usefulness for society and for Monaco. It is also a geographically strategic site for Monaco. As to the twelve employees who are concerned about their future in La Turbie, they will be transferred to the Technology Park Sophia Antipolis, next to Antibes, in 2017.
The story of purchasing the fort has been ongoing for 40 years. Both parties are therefore relieved that the negotiations have come to an end. All these years, the French telecom Orange has been holding on to the fort as it was ideally located for its scientific research. They claimed that these studies were very important for improving the quality of television and radio coverage.
Over the years of negotiations there has been much criticism, with both arguments for and against the purchase. The importance of maintaining the fort as a cultural and historical heritage was also highlighted.
André-François Pellegran, former mayor of La Turbie, approves of the purchase of the Fort by the Principality. In November 2015, as a municipal council member and president of the association “La Turbie, my city,” he wrote to the Prince of Monaco Albert II: “This fort is a special strategic place suitable for the development of economic activity. It is important for the commune of La Turbie to preserve this historic site. Especially given that the Principality have been investing in the maintenance of the fort and its preservation as a cultural heritage for many years.“
What do you think, what use could Monaco make of this historical site?
It will be interesting to see in the future how the property at this strategic site is utilized by the company and how it continues to reflect the important history it represents.