A student of environmental science at the Autonomous University of Barcelona, Andrés Seguí, has designed a plan for rail transport, which he says "may seem like a utopia" but could be the seed for eliminating cars and adapting mobility to what the public will be demanding in the near future.
"Sometimes there have to be complex projects. We cannot settle for the quickest and cheapest option. It's time to plan a city of the future and for a Palma that will grow. There will need to be connections with the rest of the island, with the port and the airport through a network of trains, Metros and trams."
He observes that a Metro link from the centre of Palma to the airport would take 12 minutes. "For this line alone, there could be up to 25 million passengers per year."
Although he is aware of the economic costs and logistics of building three new Metro lines, four tram lines and a new interurban railway line, he argues that work on the main lines could be concluded in a period of around five years and that it would be possible to amortise the cost in less than ten years. "From that point on, profits could be invested in further enhancing and expanding the transport network."
To make a new rail transport network viable, it would be necessary "to design it globally and avoid unnecessary expenses". Tunnels for the Metro to the airport could therefore also accommodate trains heading to Santanyí - as an example.
To avoid there being overhead cables for trams in Palma, he says that the trams could be powered by batteries or by hydrogen, which is due to be produced at new facilities in Lloseta.
As to the tram, although he is an advocate in principle, he questions the suitability for connecting the centre of Palma with the airport. "If the line to Son Sant Joan runs through Playa de Palma and is not separate from cars or pedestrians, it will go very slow and won't be very practical."
As well as transport in Palma, his plan contemplates projects to revive rail lines that were closed, such as Arta or Santanyí, as well as the expansion of existing ones to go to new tourist centres and places of interest.
His view of the mobility of the future comes from the need to connect Mallorca's municipalities and Palma's districts with each other and with the transport "hubs", such as the airport, the Intermodal Station and port.