By Humphrey Carter

A 40'000 square metre park is going to be built along Palma's new sea front after Palma City Council voted in favour of modifying the existing Palma planning law so that plans to remodel the city's sea front can be altered.

Despite the 13 abstentions by the opposition Partido Popular councillors, yesterday's motion was carried during the council meeting and the Councillor for the Environment, Economy and Sports, Miguel Nadal would not rule out more green spaces being included in the project.

Nadal said due to the size and importance of the new sea front project, the council wants to make sure that the wellbeing of the citizens is given the maximum care and attention and that the council also has to honour its promises of creating an eco-friendly city.

Spokesperson for the Bloc, which represents the Greens, Eberhard Grosske, said that his party was extremely pleased with the result of yesterday's meeting.

Grosske said that the new sea front must now be allowed to become a barrier between the city and the sea.
The decision was also applauded by the associations of residents which live in the area around where the new sea front, which will include Palma's new convention centre, five-star hotel and office space, is to be built.

The last thing they want is a front line of buildings to be thrown up.
However, apart from the Partido Popular who had their landmark project swept away from them when they lost the last local elections, the Balearic environmental group GOB would like to see the project extended to include Es Jonquet and its famous windmills overlooking Palma's fishing port and also the Levante industrial estate. There is a movement to save and reform Es Jonquet, which GOB supports, and the environmental group is disappointed that the city council has not decided to expand the sea front reform project to include the old fisherman's quarter of the capital and also the Levante industrial estate which is so degraded it should be flattened and replaced with a green space.

The Partido Popular maintain that the alterations to the original project, which was drawn up under their legislature, is going to push up the budget because compensation is going to have to be paid to the companies contracted to carry out work on the integral parts of the plan which are now going to be scrapped to make way for the green space.

However, work has already started on the ambitious project with sites cleared around the GESA building and the old exhibition centre demolished in order to make way for the foundation work to be carried out and the council intends to push ahead with its vision of the project.


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