Tenerife Magazine’s round up of some of the most interesting news stories of the week in Tenerife.
A Typically Tenerife Scandal
If we criticise more than we praise in our Tenerife news of the week round-up it’s because of situations such as the following. Tenerife’s jewel in the crown beach of Las Teresitas has had an unsightly blemish on its face for the past few years. The horrible concrete skeleton dubbed ‘el mamotreto’ (the behemoth or monstrosity) has been a blot on the landscape since 2007. The fact that it exists at all is alleged to be as a result of shameful tales of corruption and palms being greased. But this summer should be its last behind the golden sands as it is being torn down once and for all. And the cost for the building that never was and definitely never should have been? 6.8 million euros. Scandalous is far too passive a word for this débÃ¢cle.
Ticket Prices on the Tram and Buses Rise
The price of travelling on TITSA and the tram went up by 5 cents this week so that a single journey in the metropolitan area now costs €1.35 and a return €2.50. We all know that price hikes are inevitable but what is unacceptable is that nobody was told about it beforehand. Commuters were suddenly hit with the increase when they caught the bus or tram to work on Monday morning. The organisation responsible, MTSA, blamed a shortage of time between the decision to raise prices being made. A shortage of time? That makes it sound like it was nothing to do with them. They also quoted technical difficulties ““ which translated into layman’s language means the person responsible for publicising this sort of information simply forgot to tell anyone.
Good News Bad News for Puerto de la Cruz
…Or how to spin a story. It was handshakes and back slapping all round as the Tenerife Government and the mayor of Puerto de la Cruz announced that the 4th European Police and Firemen’s games to be held on Tenerife from 8th to 15th July 2012 will bring an extra 20,000 visitors to Tenerife’s first tourist resort. Holding the games on Tenerife is excellent news as it has international appeal, attracting participants from the United States, Canada and Dubai as well as from Spain. The irony is that the events will probably mainly be held in La Laguna and Santa Cruz as Puerto doesn’t have a suitable sports stadium. Plans were in place to build one and European funds had been agreed…but these were squashed following a motion of censure and a change of local government a couple of years ago when the current mayor re-took hold of the political reigns.
Tens of thousands of people will take to the roads and forest trails this week to make the annual pilgrimage to honour the Virgen de Candelaria in the town of the same name. Despite it being prohibited, hundreds of people will use the TF1 as a direct route to get to their destination so take extra care if driving between Santa Cruz and the south of Tenerife over the next few days especially after dark.
Third World Canary Islands
Sometimes we joke that business practices and politics in Tenerife can be more like the third world than Europe. However, a recent survey into incomes on the islands by the Canarian Institute of Statistics shocked by revealing that the comparisons might not be as big a joke as we thought. There are over 100,000 households on the islands trying to survive on earnings of less than €350 a month. Nearly 16,000 of these living hand to mouth on earnings of under €180. Nearly another 100,000 exist on an income of between 600 and 780 per month. It is staggering and, when you consider the number of flash 4x4s that are to be seen on Tenerife’s roads, reveals a quite disturbing gap between the ‘haves” and the ‘have-nots” on our holiday paradise island.
Lost on Tenerife
There are some doubts surrounding the accuracy of this report but it made us smile so we thought we’d share it anyway. Concerns about the safety of a para-glider who had been missing overnight after taking to the skies over the Anaga Mountains were allayed when he was found, alive but confused, in…Adeje. Clearly didn’t have the sat-nav engaged.
Four Star La Laguna
Congratulations to the Hotel Niveria in La Laguna which was awarded 4 star status last week. The old quarter of La Laguna is one of Tenerife’s most picturesque urban areas and a UNESCO World Heritage Site and as such deserves more visitors. Having a 4 star hotel shouldn’t harm that cause.
And finally the TIT (This Is Tenerife) of the week award goes to…Proposals to extend the North Airport.
Unbelievable though it may seem, there have been proposals to extend Tenerife’s north airport. We say unbelievable for a number of reasons. The first being that up to 3000 residents would be affected by the extension for the sake of three extra flights a day. But the main reason that it seems a folly is that Los Rodeos is in about the worst possible location for an airport you could choose. It sits at a level exactly where thick cloud forms and subsequently week after week flights are cancelled or re-routed to Tenerife Sur. Ironically on the same day as the news report about the proposed extension there were three cancellations and twelve diverted flights. That makes a total of fifteen flights that didn’t actually make it to Los Rodeos on one day. And the extension would allow how many extra flights a day? Someone can’t do their maths. Thankfully the Tenerife Government can and it looks as though the proposal has been vetoed for the time being.