After more than 30 years of traffic jams continuous, promises and solutions that never come to fruition TF-5part of the 226,000 inhabitants of the north of tenerife They use social networks these weeks to show their weariness in the face of a situation that, in the best of cases, could improve from 2028as announced at the beginning of the month by the Highway Councilor of the Cabildo de Tenerife, Enrique Arriaga (Cs). Practically every adult inhabitant of the 15 northern municipalities could have his own story of suffering from the tails of the TF-5and ones 2,000 have already signedvia change.org, to demand “urgent solutions” to end some traffic jams that they consider an “inhuman”, “shameful”, “unbearable”, “unspeakable”, “intolerable”, “anxious” and “terrible” problem or, simply, enormous collective suffering .
People from the North move to the metropolitan area so as not to have to get up three or four hours before the start of the working day or classes; resigns from job offers because the job is unaffordable stress and the excess time required to walk every morning the unpredictable TF-5; he gets up at five in the morning to avoid traffic jams and end his rest hours lying in a parking lot in Santa Cruz or La Laguna; add a safety margin of between one, two and three hours “in case there is a queue” before leaving for the airport or hospital, or directly give up anything that requires facing the TF-5 at rush hour.
In the last weeks, this historic mobility problem has returned to the forefront of the media and politics although it dates from the 90s of the 20th century. Citizens, associations and parties have once again demanded solutions and, in addition, generated a collective catharsis in which many people have exposed privately or publicly what the tails of the TF-5 mean to their lives.
«I have shared a car, I have taken the bus and now I get up at 5:30 in the morning»
people like Calixto Sosawho, thanks to teleworking and the flexibility of his company, has been able to get rid of the worst days of traffic jams starting in 2020. Graduated in physics and technical engineer in Public Works He calculated in 2015 that he had lost about 108 days of his life stuck in traffic jams on the TF-5. Some 2,592 hours in queue in 20 years. Enough time to travel from Madrid to New York 324 times, or to watch 1,728 football matches. An average of 5.4 days (about 130 hours) lost in queues each year. At the end of 2022, the number of days lost by this man from Tenerife on the TF-5 is around 130. More than 4 months of his life in the queue. The suffering for him began 26 years ago, when he enrolled in the ULL, and continues today: “I have shared a car, I have taken the bus and now I get up at 5:30 in the morning if I want to arrive on time.”
Or as fidela velazquezformer mayoress of San Juan de la Rambla and president of North Tagororwho warns that the residents of the Northwest, between San Juan de la Rambla and BuenavistaThey are the ones who suffer the most from the problems of the TF-5, since in order to reach the motorway they must first travel kilometers of a two-way road “misnamed TF-5”. And he does not hide the general weariness: «The residents of this area cannot be asked for more patience regarding the quality of communications. We have endured decades of lack of investment and patching up as best we could, resignedly enduring insufficient roads and highways that did not meet the required quality and safety parameters. It is time to put an end to this historic meekness. This region wakes up and demands. Because it is of Justice».
“Residents in this area of the island cannot be asked for more patience”
North Trade Winds has tried to channel all that anger back through a massive collection of signatures on the platform change.org. In 2017, Jose Manuel Hernandez it gathered almost 11,000, but received no response from the administrations involved: the Government of the Canary Islands and the Cabildo de Tenerife. The Alisios initiative began less than a week ago and this Wednesday, November 16, it already had some 2,000 signatures.
Below are some of the reasons published by the signatories of this initiative in change.orgWhat Rocio Mejia, who assures that he has been «20 years doing this journey; I have lost years of life, and there are solutions that can be applied without the need for major works and they are not applied. Now it is OK!”. EITHER Francisco Velasco: «I have been enduring these queues for more than 30 years going to Santa Cruz and returning around 3:00 p.m. I get up at 5:30 a.m. to be at work at 8:00 a.m. for a journey that should last 30 minutes maximum. Solutions now, enough of promises and deceptions of all political color. Let’s work, there are solutions ». EITHER Cipriano Garcia who simply confesses that “you cannot live like this.”
Stephen Rodriguez He assures that he has been “30 years in the queue”; beatrice rodriguez is a “regular user” and defines the situation as “embarrassing”, and Juan Jose Orta He only hopes “to be able to go to the hospital in peace without having to get up three hours before the appointment.” What Ana Maria Moreno, which calls for a solution and a fairer distribution of investments: «It is a shame, to go to the hospital or anywhere towards Santa Cruz, you have to leave hours in advance. And all the investments go to the South!
“It’s a shame, to go to the hospital or anywhere to Santa Cruz, you have to leave hours in advance. And all the investments go to the South!”
Francisco Xavier Salgado He is a user of the TF-5 in the morning and defines it in a few words: “It is horrible.” Antony michael reyes He believes that “the population of the North is being physically and mentally burdened”, and he is not the only one who considers it a real health problem. Susana Heras regrets the effects of the situation on the workers: «It is impossible to arrive early to work. Hours and hours of impossible traffic jams.
candelaria rodriguez believes that “it is time to solve this great mobility problem on the island”, and macarena louis He details that he circulates on this road daily to go to work and “a half-hour journey becomes, with luck, an hour and 30 minutes.” nuria perez exclaims: «I lose time and money, to go to work!»; Tania Peraza remembers “the suffering of the North every day with endless queues”, and Daniel Yonte sentence: “We lose half our lives on the highway.”
The triple insularity of the Northwest
Tagoror Norte denounces the “triple insularity” suffered by the municipalities of the Northwest of Tenerife. «The double insularity of the non-capital islands at least has compensation mechanisms, but the triple insularity of the Northwest does not have that privilege. A detour in the old C-820 due to landslides, accidents or weather factors forces us to take the TF-352 to the center of La Guancha, to access the tortuous and insecure TF-342 to Los Realejos, from where the TF is accessed. -5. About 15 more kilometers. More time wasted behind the wheel, “they lament. In his opinion, “everything here is multiplied by the bottleneck of the old C-820, whose load capacity is at its limit and will collapse when the work to close the island ring to the South is finished.”