[Bilbao] Kukutza - squatted cultural center in immediate danger of eviction

Kukutza Fassadenarbeiten

The cultural center Kukutza III has been squatted 13 years ago and is now in immediate danger of eviction and destruction. In march it became clear that the city council wants the building to be evicted and the owner wants it to be destroyed right after. Since than there has been much going on in Kukutza. On july 16th there has been a demonstration with 7,000 people. The activists of Kukutza now call for a demonstration on the 25th of august in cooperation with all other projects in the basque country which are also threatend by eviction.


13 years ago the vacant industry building was squatted. Today it has become the most important social and cultural center for the people of the barrio Errekalde and Bilbo. Many people are organized in self-administration in and around the project. One can get a fair picture of the dimension of activities  in Kukutza and the importance for the people when watching their mobilization video. [LibDub - Kukutza]

The city council of Bilbao ignores the relevance of Kukutza for the people and silently moves on with the preparation of the eviction.


The situation

The site is owned by the real estate company CABISA S.A., who has rejected every attempt for communication from the people of Kukutza. The Company just once stated in a newspaper that they are gonna tear down the building.

The city council ignores the many people engaged in Kukutza and the responsible judge has already signed the order for eviction but not yet issued to the police. Meanwhile the city council waits with the signing of the order of destruction until the police is issued the order for eviction to prevent a "re-squatting".

The development

On july 16th nearly 7,000 people came together to demonstrate against the plans to destroy Kukutza. [Youtube]

After that the city council "changed" their argumentation to not argue at all. Before that they had denied the relevance of Kukutza to the people.


In the first week of august some transportation cars from a scaffold company drove up in front of Kukutza to build a scaffold on the facade. Befor that the city council had issued a report about unstable parts in the facade to the owners of the site and requested the repair.

The workers of the scaffold company left empty-handed after the people of Kukitza made clear that they wont condone a scaffold on their building. 

Instead they proofed again the prominence of Kukutza in society and organized the repair themselves. Professional workers lowered down on ropes and fixed the parts which had been objected. They did this for free in an act of solidarity.



Kukutza Fassadenarbeiten


Through a newspaper article the activists let the city council know that they now could convince themselves of the security of the facade. The city counsil "answered" that they had not issued a "licence" for the repair.



All projects of the basque country threatened by eviction call for a collective demonstration on the 25th august in Bilbo. At the same time there will be the one-week city festival ("semana grande"). On the day of the "manifestazioa" the people of Kukutza also organize a public banquet, an occupation of the river with self-made boats, a "psikoblok" (Deep-water soloing) and concerts.




Egun horretan ikusiko dugulakoan, ikusi arte!!!
("We will see you on that day!!!")

Gora euskal herriko gaztetxeak!

Up, "gaztetxeak" (en: "autonomous youthcenters") of basque country!


One struggle! - One fight!


More information about Kukutza: www.kukutza.tk