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Real Estate Boom Hits Yeongjongdo

Posted December. 13, 2006 07:13,   


The planned size of the Yeongjong Free Economic Zone where housing complexes and industrial complexes will be built by the year 2012, is 5.7 million pyeong. The amount of compensation money to be put in to this area is the largest ever for one district. The compensation amount for Pangyo was 3.3 trillion won, and it was 3.4 trillion won for the Multifunctional Administrative City.

Don’t brag about money in Yeongjong-

A woman who worked at Yeongjong Island’s public golf range recently quit her job and now drives an imported car. The land she owned was part of the Unbuk-dong tourist range, and she is rumored to have received a compensation of 10 billion won.

A representative (anonymous, 53) of Incheon’s cultural organization said, “Yeongjong Island’s head of the dong office and representative of cultural organizations whom I ate lunch with a few days ago all appeared in expensive foreign cars and top-class domestic cars. I was very surprised.”

As money is released into the area, things that didn’t happen often before are happening frequently.

Recently a man in his forties was arrested for hitting his father. He was requesting his father to hand down his properties before the compensation, so that he could prepare money to start a business. A local (anonymous, 54) who recently left Yeongjong Island revealed, “I didn’t want to see my children fighting over money, so I just sold 3000 pyeong of farmland at a cheap price.”

If a local who has been farming turns in a farming note of confirmation and buys land in another region, they can receive a cut in transfer tax and acquisition tax. Because of this, people who want to buy land in near regions are rising. This has caused the price of farmland in nearby Sin-do, Si-do, and Mo-do to jump from 100~ 200 thousand won to 400~ 500 thousand won per pyeong.

However, locals whose compensation amounts are small are being pressed by financial institutions trying to collect their debts.

Battle for compensation-

A total of 5,850 landowners have received compensation from the Yeongjong City Development Business Office. But according to an investigation by the Korea Land Corporation, only 28.8% of these landowners are locals, and the rest are non-locals from Incheon or Seoul.

The compensation is known to have been fixed at 180-300% of the official land price, which makes it 800 thousand to two million won per pyeong.

However, locals are not satisfied. They are claiming, “Since we have been receiving infringements on property rights from the early 1990s, when the Incheon airport was being built due to the strict construction restrictions, a compensation of around 500% must be paid.”

The Emergency Measures Committee, made up of non-locals, is also continuing the demonstration against compensation.

They prefer land substitution (regaining ownership of a certain percentage of the land minus the development costs) rather than cash compensation. However, currently they are requesting a decrease in the rate of land to be allotted to build roads, parks and schools from 72% to 50%.

Incheon City revealed, “There can’t be a compensation over the estimated price. If they do not choose between land substitution or cash compensation, there is no choice but to expropriate the land forcefully.”

min07@donga.com run-juno@donga.com