It’s been a year. Almost a year, on May 8, 2018, when Carlos Alvarado took office and promised to reduce congestion by attacking the “28 cuellos de botella” (bottlenecks) crippling the roads of Greater Metropolitan Area (GAM).
It was his first presidential executive directive. But today – a year later – it was a subject that he summarized in a couple of paragraphs within his presidential report presented in the Legislative Assembly on Thursday (May 2).
Last year, Directriz 001-MOPT promised the intervention of 28 points that caused traffic congestion in the GAM, a measure to improve the mobility of people on public roads through bettering the road infrastructure, decrease congestion and the reduction of travel times through the efficient use of public transport.
In the reading his report last week, Alvarado said, “they executed several of these works, although not all of them”. He added that “the Administration is focused on solving the factors that cause delays in the initiative.”
A few minutes after the president referred to the matter in his annual report to the nation, Thursday afternoon the Minister of Public Works and Transport, Rodolfo Méndez Mata, shared through the institution’s official Facebook page the so-called ‘Programa de Infraestructura de Apoyo de la Movilidad Urbana’ (Urban Mobility Support Infrastructure Program).
Méndez explained that they include a total of 126 works (contemplating the 28 points of the 2018 directive), of which 10 are completed, 30 under construction, 17 in the bidding process, 34 in construction designs and 15 in preliminary draft.
At least in what has been published, both by President Alvarado and by Minister Méndez, it is not certain whether the 10 “concluded” are part of the 28 in the 2018 directive.
It is irrelevant to detail the concluded for we all know that traffic congestion has not eased in the GAM in the past year, some would say even worse. At best unpredictable.
Traffic congestion on the Ruta 1 and Ruta 27 every morning and afternoon is no different before last year.
It still takes more than an hour to travel the 18 kilometers from the San Jose airport to Paseo Colon and traffic from La Guacima to Escazu is at a crawl and then even slower immediately past the toll booths to the Cirvunvalacion.
Traffic on the Ruta 1 now starts to build around 5 am, an hour later than was before the decree, many heading into San Jose early.
Is this government serious about getting traffic moving? Let’s hear your opinion. Post your comments below or to our official Facebook page.