Mexican Developer Wants To Build New Cities From Scratch

<p>Capitalizing on the booming Mexican home market and government calls for better urban planning, Mexico's second biggest residential developer is planning six new towns complete with homes, stores, employment and schools.</p>
April 4, 2008, 10am PDT | Christian Madera | @cpmadera
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"Geo, Mexico's No. 2 home developer, is betting on turning empty fields into carefully planned new cities of hundreds of thousands of houses, industrial parks and shopping malls to fuel growth in coming years.

Geo is teaming up with the government, shopping center specialists and industrial firms to build six entire cities in the State of Mexico, and expects this new model to quickly become half of its business, Luis Orvananos, Geo's founder and chairman, told the Reuters Latin America Investment Summit.

"They'll have education, recreation, hospitals, shopping and jobs," Orvananos said on Thursday.

Mexico's homebuilders have been booming for more than five years thanks to improved economic stability and a government push to end a shortage of millions of houses.

Companies like Geo and competitor Homex have traditionally built neighborhoods on tracts of land on the edge of cities across the country.

But as state governments demand better urban planning and as land near cities becomes more expensive, Geo and other builders are turning to larger-scale "megaprojects" including industrial parks, retail districts and schools."

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Published on Friday, April 4, 2008 in Reuters
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