Monastery Meadows is a neighbourhood in the southern part of Sofia, near the Vitosha Mountains. It is located on both sides of Bulgaria Blvd., before the Ring Road. The neighbourhood is bordered by Bratya Buxton Blvd to the west, Todor Kableshkov St to the north, Krastova Vada neighbourhood to the east, and the Ring Road to the south. At first the area east of Bulgaria Blvd., as the name of the neighbourhood suggests, was occupied entirely by meadows that were owned in the past by Dragalevtsi Monastery, and later new housing estates were developed on the land. High groundwater is typically found here.
The neighbourhood is one of the fastest growing districts of Sofia. Monastery Meadows is conveniently located close to the centre of Sofia and is accessed by Bulgaria Blvd, one of the fastest thoroughfares of the capital city. The location of Monastery Meadows in the vicinity of Vitosha Mountains and the upscale residential neighbourhoods Boyana, Dragalevtsi and Kinocenter, on the one hand, and its easy distance of only 15 minutes by car to the centre of Sofia, on the other hand, rank it among the most attractive residential areas. The neighbourhood benefits from a quiet and peaceful atmosphere, a specific microclimate and fresh air. The ski lift to the Vitosha Mountains is located close to Monastery Meadows. The underlying problem of the neighbourhood is that, because of the hasty and unreasonable privatization of previously nationalized land, there is no public green space or a park, and scarcely any greenery at all.
Monastery Meadows West, one of Sofia’s most expensive neighborhoods, is located near the Vitosha massif, which forms an imposing backdrop to the entire city. Although housing prices are the same or even higher than in the city center, few homes offer a view of the mountain, whose uniqueness has earned it the status of a national park.
Until the 1980s, this neighborhood was considered the end of the world. It consisted of just a few small houses, rows of fields, and meadows and marshes that were home to many different animals. Today, however, these fauna and flora are almost all gone. After 1989, as the previously nationalized land was restituted to its former owners, almost all the property became privately owned. The new neighborhood developed chaotically partially because there was no plan to regulate construction. At the time, Bulgaria had poor regulations regarding the aesthetic features of new construction, and many buildings looked accordingly. Each architect realized their own vision, but nobody was interested in the neighborhood as a whole or in a comprehensive approach to the locality. Small, older houses found themselves squeezed between large blocks, and a chasm in lifestyle began to open up. Property owners and developers built one building after another with no regard for their surroundings, and no one took into account infrastructural planning of public space, streets, or sidewalks. The neighborhood was thus turned into a modern luxury ghetto with problematic infrastructure and without a joint vision for the future.