Previous Next

Black Sea Gardens, Black Sea Coast, Bulgaria

Wednesday 16 Jul 2008

Foster accused of "Biggest mistake" of his career

Black Sea Gardens by Foster + Partners in Black Sea Coast, Bulgaria
© Foster + Partners 
Your comments on this project

No. of Comments: 0

Add comments | More comments

Be the first to comment

Foster's €1billion project in Bulgaria fraught by environmental critics 

Twenty years of planning has been invested and €1 billion of capital is to be expended on Fosters + Partners’ Black Sea Gardens masterplan in Bulgaria, but protesters now say that it could be the “biggest mistake of (Foster’s) career”.

The 219 hectare development on the Black Sea Coast is Foster +Partners’ first Bulgarian project and is set to be carbon neutral. The design shows five separate villages, which will house 15,400 people, interspersed with landscaped areas, man-made lakes and a marina. Despite Foster + Partners creating the villages as tightly packed residential clusters in order to preserve the majority of the site as virgin terrain, protestors claim that virgin beaches, olive groves and oak forests will be destroyed in the development, ruining one of the last remaining untouched parts of the coast.

The Bulgarian environmental partnership, For the Nature, is said to be the main protestor and are issuing a petition to protect Bulgaria's lands. The petition reads in part:

"The Black Sea coast in Bulgaria is threatened by over-development and extends to sites protected by NATURA 2000, the European ecological network. These seaside habitats include dunes, rocks, estuaries, lagoons, forests, and are home to numerous protected species. Currently the Bulgarian government completely ignores its obligation to the nature conservation directives for these protected sites. Consequently many of the supposedly safeguarded zones are on their way to being destroyed by thousands of small and large construction projects. Authorities seem unconcerned that public opinion polls show an overwhelming concern for preserving these areas – 77% of the general population, according to opinion polls conducted in July 2007."

At time of publication Foster + Partners and associate architects in the development, Project Ltd (based in Sofia), were both unavailable for comment.

Niki May Young
News Editor

Key Facts

Status Planning
Value 1000(m€)
Were you involved in this scheme?
Foster + Partners

More projects by this architect

Thames Hub Airport

Expo 2015 UAE Pavilion

Jeddah transport system

Wessel Casa-Port Phase Two

100 east 53rd

Mexico City International Airport

RMK Headquarters

Yacht Club de Monaco

Hankook Technodome

30 St Mary Axe

First and Mission Towers

Maggie’s Centre at The Christie

551 West 21st Street

Norton Museum of Art

Bund Finance Centre

Faena House

SSE Hydro Arena

The Bow

Lenbachhaus Museum

Apple HQ

Queen Alia International Airport

Vieux Port Pavilion

ME Hotel

Faena Aleph Residences

The Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts

New York Public Library

50 United Nations Plaza

Interview: Vishaan Chakrabarti

Grand Central Terminal Masterplan

425 Park Avenue Tower

Hongqiao Vantone SunnyWorld Centre

Cuba School of Dance

Musee de la Romanitee Narbonne

Shanghai Bund International Financial Centre

Datong Art Museum

Vieux Port

Hearst Tower

Masdar City

Jameson House

Thames Hub

Thames Hub

Virgin Galactic Gateway to Space

Kuwait International Airport

Edmond J. Safra Campus, Hebrew University


Slussen Waterfront

CITIC Bank Headquarters

Washington Convention Center

BMCE branches

Zayed National Museum

Harmon Hotel

Art of the Americas Wing, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Faustino Winery

VietinBank Business Centre

Sperone Westwater Gallery

Banco Ciudad de Buenos Aires

Fortaleza Hall


Langley Academy


Quatermile Phase 1

Campus Biometropolis


980 Madison Avenue, New York

Vivaldi Tower

Incheon Free Economic Zone

Beijing International Airport

Heathrow Terminal 2

Walbrook Square

Spaceport America

Russia Tower

The Zénith

Slussen Regeneration Masterplan

Aurelis Mixed Use Complex

Camp Nou

Riva Hotel

UAE Pavilion, Shanghai Expo 2010

Capella Resort

Hermitage Plaza

The John Spoor Broome Library


Russia Tower

Hearst Tower

Al Faisaliah Tower 2

Robert and Arlene Kogod Courtyard, Smithsonian Institution

The Aleph

The Walbrook

Ruskin Square

U2 Tower

Clarence Hotel

Rimini Waterfront

State Street Corporation Fenway Entrance

Ernst & Young Headquarters

Elephant House, Copenhagen Zoo

Parke-Bernet Gallery, Upper East Side

The Willis Building

The Dolder Grand Hotel

The Index

Beijing Airport

Capella Singapore

Crystal Island

Black Sea Gardens

Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts

United Arab Emirates Pavilion

Abu Dhabi Plaza

Beach Road

Camp Nou Stadium

Capital Airport

The New Mexico Spaceport Authority Building

Dresden Station Redevelopment

Living Wall

Mixed use tower

Faustino Winery, Gumiel de Izan

Masdar Development

Editorial - Wembley Stadium

Seattle Civic Square

Clarence Hotel, Dublin

980 Madison

Khan Shatyry Entertainment Centre

980 Madison

The Bow

Lenbachhaus Museum

Serrenia residential resort and hotel

Elephant House at Copenhagen zoo

Hearst Tower

Central Market scheme

Leslie L. Dan Pharmacy Building

Tower Two

Palace of Peace

Milano Santa Giulia

St Paul’s Church, Onslow Square

Walbrook Square

Sainsbury Center for Visual Arts


Click here to view the NEWS IN PICTURES tablet site