Two groups, Palma XXI and Tramuntana XXI, are to undertake a study this summer into tourist saturation. The title of the study is "Tourism load capacity: study of the historic centres in Valldemossa and Palma" and one of its premises is to avoid excessive tourism.
The president of Palma XXI, Jaume Garau, says that the final conclusions of the study will be made known in October. The project director, Maria Gómez, explains that fieldwork will be carried out to count the number of residents, tourists and workers on certain days of the week and at different times. There will also be a survey of their perceptions. She adds that the intention is not to arrive at a "magic number" for limiting people but to create a tool that will be useful for future management.
Joe Holles, secretary of Tramuntana XXI, indicates that perceptions which exist will be translated into "real data". He points to changes that have occurred in the tourism sector over the past five years: the increased arrivals of cruise ships; the holiday rentals 'boom'; the large increase in the number of urban hotels in Palma. At the same time, the resident population has been impoverished.
The promoters of the study are aware of the importance of tourism to the Balearic economy, but they warn that measures need to be adopted so that there is better management and that the benefits revert back to the citizenship. They hope that the study will prove useful to Palma and Valldemossa town halls and form the basis for future decisions.
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