Archive for March 13th, 2008
Is Santa Cruz transport Up the Junction?

TitsaSomething had to give. It was clear when the new, and I must say excellent, tram system was being installed, that it couldn’t please everybody, and now 9 months down the line, taxi drivers and the Titsa bus company are feeling the pinch.

The tram has been a big hit, sleek and stylish, fast and direct and with 8 million passengers paying 9 million euros in fares already, Â it has answered a lot of critics. The Cabildo owned Titsa bus company have made several complaints, routes disrupted to allow the tram a smooth passage and of course dwindling passengers, a potential threat to jobs. They have just hit back by slicing 10 minutes off the 015 service between La Laguna and Santa Cruz, making it’s 20 minute trip a bit faster than the tram but the flash new kid in town calls at many more stops on a long winding route.Tram

But the loudest squeals are coming from the taxi companies, especially those in La Laguna, who have denounced their big city neighbours for crossing their boundaries to poach some extra fares to make up for their losses to the tram. La Laguna has 400 licensed taxis and Santa Cruz has 1.087, and at the moment the only hand signals they are exchanging are two fingered ones.

Things got a little more tense this week when Radio Taxis of La Laguna had their aeriel transmitter cable cut, putting 300 drivers out of action while the repair was made. No direct accusations have been made but it all adds to the spirit of mistrust. Whatever happens next, there is bound to be a lot more clenched teeth, blasted horns and frantically rung bells before peace breaks out on the mean streets of the municipality.