Apart from the work in Guía de Isora, the expansion of Los Cristianos and the use of the ports of Granadilla and Santa Cruz will be studied.
SANTA CRUZ DE TENERIFE, Sep 10 (EUROPA PRESS) –
The Cabildo de Tenerife and the Government of the Canary Islands have agreed to commission the preparation of a macro-study that defines the future of the construction project of the port of Fonsalía, in Guía de Isora, and the improvement of maritime connectivity between Tenerife, La Palma, and La Gomera and El Hierro.
This has been announced in a joint press conference by the president of the Cabildo, Pedro Martín, and the Minister of Public Works, Transport and Housing, Sebastián Franquis, who have agreed that a “new stage” is opening in which they will analyze all the options from the environmental, territorial and socio-economic point of view.
Franquis, who has confirmed that the environmental impact statement of the Fonsalía project has expired since December 2018 according to the reports of his council and that of Ecological Transition, has indicated that the study will be commissioned before the end of September and they expect have the first conclusions in the middle of next year.
The counselor has commented that this initiative is related to the “majority opinion” of society and is better consistent with a time when the government has a climate change agenda and projects have to comply with the environmental requirements of the European Union.
Thus, he has indicated that they are going to work on five major options: not to build the port of Fonsalía; maintain construction; study the expansion of the port of Los Cristianos and improve access roads to solve the traffic collapse; analyze the use of the port of Granadilla for passenger traffic and derive passenger traffic to the port of Santa Cruz de Tenerife since most of the users come from the metropolitan area.
He has pointed out that this agreement takes “one more step” in the debate that has been opened especially on the island of Tenerife and believes that Fonsalía’s investment, estimated at around 200 million, deserves to be studied which is the “best alternative”.
APPEARANCE BEFORE PARLIAMENT
Franquis has advanced that he will appear at his own request this month in the Parliament of the Canary Islands to present this agreement and will also hold meetings with different economic and social agents in order to achieve “the greatest possible consensus” and “settle” this project definitively, which comes from 1992.
In addition, he has commented that this agreement between institutions is not made to “eliminate differences” between the partners of the Government, apart from the fact that the Fonsalía project was not included in the ‘Pact of Flowers’. “It is a solid agreement and that coincides with what is considered between the different political forces,” he commented.
Along these lines, it has also guaranteed that this agreement will prevent it from being a matter of debate in the next congresses of the PSOE. “We want this new stage to end the problems of Los Cristianos and not carry all the years of the previous project,” he added.
For his part, Pedro Martín has once again defended his position that the “best solution” to solve maritime connectivity is the construction of the port of Fonsalía, but has stressed that it is not a matter of “imposing” his criteria but of looking for the best alternative determined by technical studies.
He said that there is no “particular interest” in one project or another, no matter how since the 90s it was decided that Fonsalía was the bet, although at that time the port of Granadilla did not exist, for example, so he sees positive that a new process of “dialogue” be opened and a decision taken that is “for the benefit of the citizenry.”
“I am not going to intervene in that study, this should not be the opinion of the president, but a balance between economic and environmental interests and define in the end which is the best option,” he commented.
“IT’S NOT A WASTE OF TIME”
Likewise, he urged not to remain in the “melancholy” of what the CC governments did in the past that “commissioned projects and let their processing expire”, something that “is not reasonable or adequate” because “a lot of money has been spent “in the processing of the port of Fonsalía.
According to Martín, the Fonsalía project “is going for 30 years” and it is “time” to make a “thoughtful decision, seeking consensus and evaluating all the options”, and which also takes into account what is said in the islands of La Palma, La Gomera and El Hierro.
“It is about establishing a script and a roadmap, stop making statements and start to act,” he stressed, highlighting the “good relationship” that exists with the Government of the Canary Islands and that allows “moving forward together” also in unlocking of highway projects.
For Martín, conducting a study “is not a waste of time” since the improvement of Tenerife’s maritime communications with the ‘green islands’ for the next 40 years is at stake “and even to rule out it is necessary to have criteria and a study rigorous”.