It was long before the old paseo disappeared that the road between the Altillo and the Santo was turned into a one-way street by widening the pavements. Ever since then, you have had to drive right around town if you missed the turning.
The new paseo, inaugurated in 2006, had been three years under construction, effectively throttling local businesses along the then-known ‘ground zero.’ All the free surface parking; some 120 spaces, disappeared to make way for the underground car park, which is arguably counterproductive.
So, why the revamping and changes now? The Mayor explained, “The paseo is dead, with many closed business premises and most of the bank branches have gone.”
She believes that the Paseo del Altillo should be the “motor of Almuñécar” thus the proposed changes are hardly a whim.
She added with irony, “Just look at how badly designed the paseo is; it must be the only one in Spain from which you cannot see the sea.” Old timers would point out that with the old paseo you couldn’t either, of course.
The bulk of the work will be to make the through road into a 2-way system, so that you can drive from El Santo down to the Paseo del Altillo, before turning down next to Bar Quiros.
Work will begin in Plaza de Abderramán (in front of Edifício Sexi), along past the Caletilla, which the Mayor considers obsolete or of little used. Here the road will be widened at the expense of the said beach.
At the other end much of the gardened area bordering the road will disappear to be able to widen it. The Mayor considers that the gardened areas were built without adequate drainage, causing tremendous damp problems in the bars below.
The plan is for work to begin after the summer, in September and to take between three and six months… we’ve heard that before!
On the other hand we received a press release from ex-Mayor, Juan Carlos Benavides entitled, “The World Upside Down,” in which he states: Whilst all other towns are restricting traffic to commercial areas, the Herrera administration is taking away pedestrian areas to make way for cars!”
Editorial Comment: If the intention was to make the area pedestrianized, then the idea of putting an underground car park there was an obvious error, because it condemned the area to being accessible by car. There were much better and technically easier and cheaper locations to build an underground car park – under the Friday Market, for example.
Making the Paseo area and parking accessible from the West can only be positive.
However, quite another thing is whether that 800,000 euros should be spent on a higher priority, such as putting the underground parking beneath the market back into operation…
(News: Almunecar, Costa Tropical, Granada, Andalucia – Photo: Google Streetview)