Green Areas Threatened in New Urban Plan
Staff Reporter / 2007-11-05 14:19:30
Some 330,000 square metres of traditional farm land; land mainly dedicated to citrus fruits and vegetable growing, could be wiped out, if the Generalitat of Valencia gets its own way as development is being contemplated in the Almoradí General Plan of Urbanisation.
The land around the towns of Algorfa, Dolores and Orihuela, all typically agricultural land, as well as a high percentage of Lomas de la Jumillana and El Raiguero, will join the ranks of other areas which have been re-categorised from rustic land to areas to be urbanised. The green area around Los Montesinos could also follow the same fate.
The Generalitat of Valencia is urging Almoradí Council to carry out this re-categorisation. Originally the Valencian Government had drawn up a plan to re-categorise 19 million square metres, a figure which has now been halved, but is still very high. However, the land not on the new plan has been placed on hold, supposing that when the other land has been filled with concrete, they will then start work on this land, which happens to contain the estates of the Mayor of Torrevieja, Pedro Hernandez Mateo, whose high figure sale of land to a Torrevieja Construction Company has led to him being questioned by anti-corruption lawyers.
On another front, the Association of Friends of the Wetlands of Alicante South (AHSA) has denounced that the development taking place on El Saladar, 600,000 square metres of residential land, will put a stop to the only option that exists for creating a green corridor in the Vega Baja, something this Ecological Group have always fought for and which was agreed upon in the Plan for Territorial Action (PAT), which the Valencian Generalitat made. AHSA have said that as soon as the General Plan is on show to the public, they will file a formal complaint, as the Plan has not considered the protection of farm land or El Saladar.
Jose Mateo of the IU political party pointed out that this planned invasion into traditional farm land cannot be justified when in the town centre alone there are a million unoccupied houses. He described the project to build 22,000 houses on green areas in Almoradí, areas which have been used for agriculture for as long as people have been living in the town, as crazy.