New delay for the return of concerts to Las Armas de Zaragoza

The administrative process that should lead to the return of musical activity in the Zaragoza space of Las Armas has suffered a new delay. After one of those interested in operating the privately managed municipal center requested a series of clarifications, a report has indeed detected “two contradictions” in the wording of the specifications that have already been clarified and published. These are two points of a technical nature but have forced to extend the deadline for submitting offers. “An extension of the term is considered necessary so that potential bidders have sufficient time to know the clarified data,” it is indicated in the document drafted by the Zaragoza Cultural Municipal Society and dated last Friday, May 13.

Initially, the term for those interested in exploiting the cultural space of the San Pablo neighborhood to present their offers concluded last Tuesday, May 17. Now, the new resolution has extended it until June 16.

The potential winners – among whom are the previous managers (El Fantasma Producciones SL) – only hope that the bidding and resolution process does not take too long. In this sense, it should be remembered that the previous managers were more than three years waiting for the specifications that would make clear the conditions in which the space should be managed so that it is economically viable. That publication finally arrived at the beginning of April, a necessary step that should lead to the return of musical and cultural activity to Las Armas, which has closed from March 2020.

“What we want is for the center to return to programming concerts and recover a space that we believe is a reference in the city,” stresses Sergio Vinadé, from The Phantom Productions. This society yes, he plans to present an offer to once again opt for the management of Las Armas. In fact, he was going to do it last Tuesday, but the day before he noticed the extension of the deadline on the Zaragoza City Council website.

As this newspaper has learned, another of those interested in opting for the operation of the center is the Provincial Association of Entrepreneurs of Party, Dance and Nightclubs of Zaragoza. However, its interest is directly linked to the real activity that the space disco may have, as recognized by its president, Alberto Campuzano: «We believe that more light should be shed with this specific matter, beyond the fact that we consider that the specifications have been drafted in general in an inconclusive and ambiguous way».

Time limit at night

Be that as it may, the management conditions established in the new specifications do refer to the time limit. Thus, the privately managed public space may open until 01:30 in the morning with the possibility of extending up to one more hour on Fridays, Saturdays and the eve of holidays. “However, there may be express authorization from the city council for some specific and extraordinary activity,” the document points out.

It should not be forgotten that Las Armas has not been without controversy due to the neighbors complaints, who have denounced on several occasions that the concert hall worked as a disco until the wee hours of the morning. For all these reasons, in the new specifications a balance has been sought between “exploitation of the service and the guarantees of conciliation of the neighbors”. In fact, the new model does not authorize the use of the outdoor stage either.

Las Armas has played a key dynamic role in the city, holding more than 200 concerts and events each year (before the pandemic).

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New delay for the return of concerts to Las Armas de Zaragoza

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