Graffiti is a massive problem all the way around the ring road. | Richie Prior


I have a love-hate relationship with the Via de Cintura. For those reading this who are asking who or what? It’s the ring road around the capital city of Palma here in Mallorca. Now I’m not called Dad Taxi for nothing, I drive that road more or less once a day 7 days a week and sometimes twice. It might be for work but usually it’s to get my two sons either to and from football training or a match. I have done the journey from Santa Ponsa to Son Fusteret where the boys train in 15 minutes on a good day and 1 hour and 30 minutes on a bad day.

A decision in February 2021 made by the then Government to reduce its speed limit from 120 kilometers an hour to 80 kilometers an hour caused an outcry at the time. They claimed it was with the aim of combating pollution, reducing emissions and unclogging a road on which traffic jams formed every day. Antoni Cànovas, who at the time was one of the most respected Road Safety Experts in the country said that there were other options. “It is not logical that on roads with 2 lanes the speed limit is 100 kilometers per hour and on a highway that’s lit up, with three lanes in each direction and no roundabouts it’s 80 kilometers an hour.” He added “The speed limit could be reduced to 100 kilometers an hour during the day and increased to 120 kilometres an hour from 21:00, they should consult the professionals before making decisions like this.”

Despite this the policy was brought in. Remember the words “combating pollution, reducing emissions and unclogging a road on which traffic jams formed every day.” Did anyone see any change? No me neither. In fact I’d say the traffic has got worse and the emissions greater by being stationary for so long.

Now there’s a new Government in town and since Monday the new limit is 100 kilometers an hour. I had to laugh though that no expense had been spared to cover up the 80 kilometers an hour signs. They did it with bin liners! I’ve had plenty of opportunities to sit and watch the world go by listening to Chris Rea’s road to hell and noticing some weird and not so wonderful things.

On the road to Santa Ponsa you go underneath the roundabout at the Magalluf turn off and on the right hand side there’s a random bush growing out of the wall.

The graffiti is a massive problem all the way around the ring road. Actually an island problem if I’m honest but that’s for another day. I can’t believe that someone hasn’t invented a graffiti free concrete or metal yet. Why don’t they put up cameras in the hotspots and when you catch the people doing it make them clean it off. I’m not against graffiti if it’s in a controlled area like the wall in Magalluf but it doesn’t create a good first impression for tourists arriving on the island. I’m hearing that they’re planning to put up more acoustic screens to reduce the noise for residents. No offence but if you’ve bought a property near the islands busiest road surely you’ll expect noise? Also how long do you give them before they’re covered in graffiti too?

Does anyone else use the feeder lane at the Bendinat turn off to speed past the waiting traffic? Or is it just me? Why are there no entry signs on the opposite side of the road in certain places where it is totally impossible to drive up anyway? Luckily there are no roundabouts until you get off but don’t get me talking about how the Spanish navigate them. It’s not normal!

That Chris Rea song has just changed to “I’m driving home for Christmas”.

Take care everybody and can I take this opportunity to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.