County Council hands in the Plan for El Caminito del Rey with 11m euros budget to the Andalusia Governement
Mr Bendodo is pleased about the co-operation with the Andalusian Government (Junta de Andalucía) and the Municipalities of Álora, Ardales and Antequera: ‘aim is to design a complete and successful tourist project’.
The document includes three phases with works on access points, car parks, rest areas, stations, tourist reception centre and viewpoints.
Today, Málaga County Council President Elías Bendodo has handed in The Special Plan for El Caminito del Rey to José Luis Ruiz Espejo, representative of the Andalusian Government. The document, which was result of agreement between the County Council and the municipalities of Ardales, Álora, and Antequera, includes projects with 11, 586, 040 euros budget ‘aimed to transform the beauty spot into a tourist project that is unique, outstanding, different and high quality’, Mr Bendodo confirmed. The Plan benefits Abdalajís Valley as well.
The above document is going to be analyzed by the Andalusian Government, the competent body for that kind of questions, in order to study influence on the environment of the project which is aimed at tourist and sustainable development of the area.
The plan has three phases and it is complemented by the rebuilding of the boardwalk, part of El Caminito del Rey that is being reformed thanks to the County Council’s budget of 2, 24 m euros and is to be finish until the end of the year. The reforms are thought to prepare the path – El Caminito del Rey for a higher number of visitors that are expected to come once the hanging trail over the gorge- El Desfiladero de los Gaitanes is open.
The works from the plan are to be taken up by the County Council, the Andalusian Government and the above municipalities. Mr Bendodo has explained that the project does not have to be finished at once, but can be progressively developed. This is why it has been divided in three phases: opening for public use, preparing the place for its tourist exploitation, and consolidation of this spot as a quality tourist destination.
‘The joint project of the Málaga County Council, the Andalusian Government, and the municipalities Ardales, Álora and Antequera was successful in the case of the boardwalk rebuilding plan, but we know that this is just a beginning, and that other initiatives must be taken in order to finish the tourist project’, Mr Bendodo assured.
José Luis Ruiz Espejo, representative of the Andalusian Government in Málaga, highlighted the importance of the plan that ‘is an urban project, which is meant to fix the access points and the infrastructure of the area of El Caminito del Rey’.
After the document was approved by the County Council and the municipalities, Mr Ruiz Espejo has pointed out: ‘we want to achieve the same goal, and reach a consensus on the plan by the technicians of Andalusian Governement and the County Council, and approve it as soon as possible.’
Once the plan is handed it by the Council, it must be examined by the Regional Planning Service of the Andalusian Government, which will ask all the involved bodies to inform about it.
As far as that is concerned, Mr Ruíz Espejo said that this process is ‘extensive and complex, as it normally happens in the case of urban development.’ Nevertheless, he assured that Andalusian Government will ease the procedures as much as possible.
Use for Tourist Purposes
The first phase of the plan includes works on roads and access points, above all the road MA5403 (from Ardales to Chorro) that belongs to the province road network. The road of the section between 0 and 4.2 km is to be reinforced, and the one between 5.3 and 8.1 km is to be broadened. This work will make its use possible for busses, and will make the spot more accessible to tourists.
Moreover, the building of deterrent car parks in the Municipalities of Álora and Ardales are planned, as well as rest areas close to the chapel of El Chorro and in Gaitanejo. Tourist signs and a station where passengers can change means of transport will also be provided. The first phase is to be financed from the tender budget of 3, 035, 150 euros.