Life In The Slow And Fast Lanes

Money, or the lack of it, is on many minds at the moment but as some long term Tenerife projects never seem to end, other big money dreams are still hoping for a green light to start.

The ring road linking Adeje to Santiago del Teide is a long running sage dating back to the first digging in 2006. Since then the only motor action it has seen is the demolition derby of the film crew of Fast And Furious 6. Now comes the news that work has stopped, nine sub contractors have been told to pick up their gear and take a break and 200 workers have been advised to sign on the paro. It seems the money isn’t around to finish this short cut, I thought it was near to completion, the tunnels have long since emerged at the Santiago end and late last year when I was walking that way the site was buzzing like Bob the Builders depot.

Meanwhile at the other side of the island the proposed motor racing track is back on the agenda. The site is Atogo in Granadilla and the land has been identified but now comes the tricky matter of funding. The next step is a big presentation in Santa Cruz on 30 April to outline more details of the project, then there is a four month window for financial backers to put in their bids. You may wonder why Tenerife needs a motor racing circuit, so do I, but the government and supporters are keen to show that it will create building jobs and then admin and running costs as well as pulling in more specialist visitors to the island.

Another huge project nearing completion (the tunnel should be open early April) is the Via Litoral in Santa Cruz, that’s the new layout from the port across to Plaza de España. Now into the fourth year it started with a 40 million euro budget that increased to 48 million and should have been ready by this February.

The big improvement wont be seen until the finish, so far the road has been widened and taken down under tunnels going past the ferry port and coming up in Avenida Anaga. Six laurel trees were uprooted by a giant crane and moved back a few feet as well, once it is all done, traffic will be taken down and out of sight while the area above will become a 50,000 square metre pedestrian zone spreading across from Plaza de España to the port with extra cafes and leisure parks. The slogan is Uniting The City With The Sea and it will certainly make the capital more attractive to visiting cruise traffic. We should see if it was all worth it before the end of the year

To be fair many of these big projects were drawn up before the crisis kicked in but now we are stuck deep in its grip it’s proving hard to top and tail them as the money runs out. The race track, like the proposed north to south rail link, is very dependent on new money being poured in, maybe we should savour these grand designs, if things don’t buck up in the global economy the next wave of development in Tenerife may be whether or not to replace light bulbs or dab a new coat of paint on public buildings.