Politicians make incomprehensible decisions and one of them is to allow a hotel to be built in the Parque Natural de Nijar in Almería.
San Jose has two of the most beautiful, unspoilt beaches left on the southern coastline of Spain. There’s not a hotel, bar, restaurant or any construction, other than pre-park cortijos, anywhere near them.
This lack of urban intrusion is why period films have been filmed there because there is nothing to make you think that you’re not looking at a landscape straight out of the 18th or 19th Century.
The sheer unspoilt beauty of Playa Genoveses and Playa Monsul is the reason that people flock to these fine-sand, sweeping beaches. It’s also the reason why 37,000 people have signed an online petition to stop the hotel project in its tracks.
The Junta de Andalucía has given permission for a 30-room rural hotel to be built in the Chiqueras area behind Bahía de Los Genoveses (see photo of beach and hiterland) by converting an old farm building.
“It doesn’t matter how hard you try to make it respectful with the environment, it will have a significant impact,” points out the online petition. It also says that the most attractive part of the natural park is its virgin beaches, which will be virgin no more, especially during the construction period with heavy machinery and lorries coming and going.
The development company, Torres y González Díaz S.L. got the go ahead because according to the Junta, the project is “compatible” with the laws governing natural spaces.
The conservationist association, Amigos del Parque, has called upon the Junta to rectify its decision as it doesn’t matter how hard the Junta tries to sell the project as an “ecohotel” it is not the model of tourism that the park needs.
The Mayor of Níjar, Esperanza Pérez, within whose municipality the park falls, sides with the junta (run by the same party as her own) stating that it is legal: “I understand people’s positions but emotions aside the project is judicially sound,” she said.
The provincial delegate for the Environmental Department of the Junta said, “unjustified social alarm is being created,” adding, “we haven’t given permission for a hotel to be built but have given the green light for cortijo to be renovated allowing not one square metre to be built that already exists.”
Editorial comment: This time it’s the PP behind the steering wheel screwing over a natural park, but during the long years when the Junta was in the hands of the PSOE, they turned a blind eye to a 400-room monstruosity of a hotel being built on Playa Algorrobica in Carboneras. In conclusion, they’re all as bad as each other as far as incomprehensible laxity goes when it comes to the worst kind of urban intrusion onto unspoilt, irreplaceable landscape.
(News: San Jose, Almeria)