Remediation of Wola Libre – how we turned a crisis into a success!
BPI Real Estate is a property development company operating in Belgium, Poland, and Luxembourg. The company is part of Belgium’s CFE Group listed on Euronext Brussels and currently employs over 8,000 people worldwide.
In Poland, BPI Real Estate develops projects in Warsaw, Wrocław, Gdańsk, and Poznań.
After earthworks commenced at the construction site at ul. Obozowa 20 in the Wola district of Warsaw, legacy chemical contamination was discovered. The developer made a decision to safely remove the contamination, which, despite a rational cause and obvious environmental benefits, aroused great controversy among residents of nearby buildings. The controversy triggered a wave of adverse media publicity.
A meeting held at the Security and Crisis Management Office of the Capital City of Warsaw with representatives of BPI Poland, Regional Directorate for Environmental Protection, Provincial Environmental Protection Inspector, District Building Control Inspector, District Sanitary and Epidemiological Station, Environmental Protection Office and Wola District Office of the Capital City of Warsaw, proved to be a turning point. During the meeting, BPI Polska reiterated its commitment to removing the legacy soil contamination discovered at the Wola Libre project site.
The work plan was consulted with all participating institutions, who confirmed the remediation methodology proposed by the developer posed no threat to local residents. A statement summarising the meeting was sent to the neighbours and the media.
Tauber Promotion launched regular communication activities, which helped to gradually turn public sentiment to the company’s favour. Printed and digital media posted materials explaining the remediation process and its positive impact on the environment, with social media harnessed to communicate with local residents.
Soothe public concerns and convince the public that:
- conducted works are safe and pose no threat to the life and health of local residents
- selected remediation method is effective – reassuring clients of the project that the remediation works will leave soil clean and the value of project apartments will not be affected or will even rise.
The effects of our actions:
- We stopped the wave of negative publicity around the developer and the project, generating positive media coverage
- We significantly raised awareness of the remediation process, and the fact it would help maintain intact the value of apartments built on the remediated land
- We positioned the remediation process carried out at ul. Obozowa 20 as ‘Poland’s exemplary remediation project’ and an example to follow
- We helped the company sell all apartments delivered under the project
- We enhanced the developer’s image and positioned the company as a pioneer and go-to expert
‘Our cooperation with Tauber Promotion was based on mutual trust and partnership. At each stage of the project, we could count on all team members to do their best to successfully resolve the crisis. The excellent organisation of their work provided added value. It’s worth noting that some of Tauber’s recommendations were inconsistent with our initial assumptions, but they proved extremely effective in the end. Our relationship with Tauber made us realise the importance of integrating PR activities into the marketing strategies of individual projects but also into the process of building brand awareness and the image of a go-to expert.’
– Daria Małecka, Marketing Manager,
BPI Real Estate Poland.