Santiago del Teide is facing «a project to renaturalize the space with which we intend not only to legalize the situation of the square, but to return that strip of the coast to its natural state, ”explains the mayor of the municipality, Emilio Navarro. He talks about the project for the plaza and surroundings of Puerto de Santiago, an area for which “a competitive solution is designed, which meets the standards of tourism quality and sustainability required by regional, national and international financing programs.”
The scope of action has Approximate area of 10,000 square meters and five actions are proposed: the vertical connection with the traditional nucleus; the regeneration of the slope with endemic vegetation, water collectors and design of vertical connection itineraries; the redesign of the plaza, incorporating an underground car park (with 200 parking spaces distributed over two floors) and a modal exchange area with the Puerto de los Gigantes-Plaza de Santiago coastal connection shuttle; the projection of a free space that incorporates public facilities such as kiosks, tourist offices, etc.; and the adaptation of the existing cove as a bathing area.
The resulting new multifunctional and urban space will accommodate the activities and needs not only of the residents, but will also enrich the tourist offer. To do this, a large square is proposed as a connecting element between the urban fabric and the coast, which in addition to articulating, structuring and ordering the activities and uses of the place, will connect –as far as possible– this new space with the existing ones, generating a boardwalk.
It is available an interchange at the level of the avenue, for the arrival and departure of visitors in buses, taxis, bicycles and pedestrians. Likewise, a new two-storey underground car park will be built, occupying the current section of the road and solving the need for car parks.
The basic project, which the Santiago del Teide City Council already has, articulates integrated facilities for the square and green areas: public facilities, such as kiosks and tourist offices, as well as small shopping areas linked to leisure and restaurants.
The projected building on three levels «could recall the natural forms of the volcanic flows of the Island in contact with the sea». The first level, the one on the upper level, is the one that “solves the problem of parking, the real opening of a maritime front that adequately links the environment and that invites you to walk and stay”.
The second level, the intermediate level, facilitates the recovery of the coastline including underground parking, which frees up the upper level of automobiles, as well as a large area where all kinds of events can be held, just as it happens today. Between both uses, a line of shops is introduced that will guarantee the activity and complement the needs of the environment.
The third level, the one on the lower level, is the transition space between what is built and the sea. For this, some areas of stay are generated for the use of the bather as well as an accessibility to the beach, currently almost in disuse.
The Avenida Marítima will have only one roundabout lane at this level, with traffic regulation exclusively for public transport (taxis), emergency vehicles and residents accessing their garages. To this end, the road will be reduced to a one-way south-north direction towards Los Gigantes and traffic will be diverted creating a ring through Antonio González Barrios and Caleta Jurado streets, in front of the Puerto Santiago square, transforming it into a large one-way street, reducing the section of the road and eliminating surface parking.
The intended coastal regeneration ranges from Puerto de Santiago to La Hondura. The recovery of the coves for public use, promoting pedestrian traffic and the enjoyment of people, the reconstruction of the lava flows of the place to facilitate the passage of people, preparing small platforms for connection with the sea for their enjoyment and use of the views of this waterfront is the purpose in this matter. In fact, it is proposed to dredge the ravine because this would bring the sea closer to the town.
The estimated budget for this work amounts to 9,132,500 euros. Emilio Navarro understands that “we are facing a project of great importance for the municipality and its economy and for its impact on the revaluation of our tourist area.”