News - Costa del Sol Archive 2001-07-23

News Archive from Andalucia & Costa del Sol

...News from Andalucia

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Week July 16th to 23rd July 2001


Residents protest against modern buildings in picturesque village

Set in the southern foothills of the Sierra Almijara, six kilometers inland from Nerja, the village of Frigiliana is renowned for its narrow, cobbled streets, whitewashed houses, and flower-laden patios and balconies.

The village is on every tourist's itinerary and has all the charm of a 16th century Moorish settlement. However, over the last few years, it has seen development unprecedented in its history, and is now facing an identity crisis as new housing overshadows the old town, both literally and metaphorically. Claims of irreparable damage to Frigiliana´s ambiance have now been made by local residents, along with pleas for a halt on further building.


Particular problems have been caused by the development at Los Bancales, according to the President of the Resident's Association, Ana Ortíz Cortés, who alleges that it has been built to greater dimensions than those for which it was licensed. An extra store has been added, she claims, which overshadows the old town. Sra Ortiz is calling for developers to construct smaller buildings, which fit in with the town's appearance and meet legal requirements.

The town's Mayor, Javier López Ruiz, has responded by saying the Town Hall was "not asleep" and would take court action against developers who do not observe the terms of their construction licenses.



Contamination Fears Spark Ecologist's Action

The environmental group, Ecologistas en acción Mijas, has issued official complaints against the waste disposal plant in Mijas to various environmental bodies.

The group are concerned at the risks to the environment and of contamination from waste burned at the plant between June 9 and 11/ 2001, which they fear could affect the Sierra Alpujata.

The ecologist group claims that the construction of the Mijas plant is not up to the volume of work it is doing at present. They stress no provision was made for the continual burning, which could result in an accumulation of methane gas, especially in the current high temperatures. It also fears an escape of contaminants from the plant into the Arroyo de los Toros.

No more waste

The group has again voiced its concern that the Mijas waste disposal plant might be integrated into the network operated by the Association of Town Halls of the Western Costa del Sol. If that occurred the plant might be asked to treat waste from Fuengirola and Benalmádena, as it did during the recent strike at the Casares plant. The ecologist believes the Mijas plant simply isn't up to the task.


The bodies of 6 people, all illegal immigrants from North Africa, were found on the beaches of Tarifa at the weekend. 4 bodies were found in a rocky area near a capsized boat while the other 2 were discovered in an abandoned inflatable boat on the beach. The Guardia Civil also detained 134 immigrants on the various sand dunes and beaches of the area.

The six bodies will now undergo a post-mortem to discover the exact cause of death. The 134 people detained are being held by the National Police in Algeciras pending repatriation. With these latest deaths and arrests the
Total for last weekend on the coastal stretch of Tarifa is 9 dead and 333 arrests.


A woman in her 60s, speaking English, surprised the staff of the Málaga children's hospital, The Hospital Maternal Infantil, on Sunday afternoon when she left there a sixth month old baby girl. The presumed English woman repeatedly told the hospital staff she "couldn't look after the girl any longer" and made her escape as the Pediatric staff started to examine the baby.

The police were contacted and started a search for the alleged grandmother, who is believed to live in the area. Until the woman is found no further steps can be taken in determining what is to be done with the baby, named by the grandmother as Monica. Several families have already contacted the hospital to inquire about adoption forms.


900 new parking spaces are to be created at the new commercial center, La Victoria, at la La Cala del Moral, near Rincón de la Victoria.
The area's municipal delegate, Diego Narbona, said that the provision was in response to the expected interest in the new center. When it opens in December, La Victoria will include a hypermarket, several smaller shops, and a cinema.


The search is on for a new site for Torre del Mar's tourist office, in place of its current premises which the new tourism delegate for the area, Javier Checa, has home in the square by Torre del Mar church, but Mr. Checa is looking for permanent premises which should be more central and close to the Paseo Marítimo. He also hopes to open a tourist office in Vélez- Málaga.


Residents and visitors to Fuengirola will have a new leisure and recreational area as of this autumn when the new botanic and archaeological park in the imposing setting of the Sohail Castle is opened. It covers an area of 60,000 square metres and will have taken nearly two years to complete.

Fuengirola´s Mayoress, Esperanza Oña, says the town will be celebrating the opening of the park in about two months time.


One of the priorities of Marbella Town Hall is to increase the availability of parking spaces in the municipality. It has been announced that the Town Hall will invest more than 500 million Pesetas in a new underground car park in San Pedro. It will have 432 places, 140 more than initially planned, and work will start in September 2001.


After more than two year's work the second phase of the urban road through Alhaurín de la Torre is completed and open to traffic. The project to make the A-366 into a great boulevard now allows the various neighborhoods and urbanizations of the west zone of the municipality to gain access to the town center via this splendid new roadway. The cost of this section was 150 million pesetas.

The new western phase stretches from the petrol station at La Torre to Pinos de Alhaurín. Now the Town Hall is proceeding with the third and final section of the boulevard will run from Fuensanguinea to Tabico. The Town Hall has funded 70 per cent of the boulevard, the remainder being financed by the province.




The prestigious golf tournament, the Volvo Masters, which traditionally closes the European Golf Circuit season, will return to the Valderrama golf course at Sotogrande next year. The tournament had been held at Valderrama between 1988 and 1996 but since then has been hosted by the Montecastillos course in Jerez.

The Valderrama course is rated as one of the best in continental Europe. In 1997 it was the venue for the Ryder Cup and in 1999 and 2000 it hosted the American Express World Championships. The XV Volvo Masters will be held at Valderrama in November of next year. Past winners at the course have included Nick Faldo, Sandy Lyle, Colin Montgomery and Bernhard Langer.


The Chamber Accounts of Andalucia has found serious anomalies in the accounts of the Association of Town Halls of the Western Costa del Sol. These irregularities took place between the years 1997 and 1998, when the association was presided over by Marbella´s Mayor Jesus Gil. The Chamber has reported that there are numerous and important deficiencies in the accounts and there is " uncertainty " over the final cost of the water desalination plant.

......Costa del Sol News Archive