Photo posted by former President Oscar Arias and his wife, Suzanne Fischel, describing the wonders of the ruta 27 and "glad that I built it!"
Photo posted by former President Oscar Arias and his wife, Suzanne Fischel, describing the wonders of the ruta 27 and happy that he built it!

– A post on Facebook in which former President Oscar Arias said he was “happy” to have built the Ruta 27 between San José and Puntarenas, sparked controversy on the social networks this Sunday.

“Yesterday after lunch in Turrucares with a group of ex-legislators, Suzanne an I took the Ruta 27 (designed in the nineties) to Jaco for the night to enjoy the sun and sea. What a wonderful road! How glad I am to have built it!,” said the Facebook post.

The statement general strong criticism by many Costa Ricans about the road that “is already falling apart”. One comment said “you travelled on the same ruta 27 as I ????? (sic)”.

Other comments were about the constant landslides and traffic congestion. “What do travelled by helicopter?”, was yet another one comment along the same sentiment of the Arias’ view of the road.

But the comments weren’t all critical, some taking the time to thank the former President and the legislators for the road to the Pacific coast, adding photos of their (positive) experiences on the road.

The Facebook post
The Facebook post

The Ruta 27 is a sensitive issue in the country. After 30 years of planning and stop-start-stop-start construction, a concession contract to a foreign company, constant landslides, closures and tolls, Costa Ricans have a road that in a few years (inaugurated in 2010) has become over congested.

The congestion is so bad that to make it to the port in less than an hour, the drive has to be planned out during low traffic times and most Sundays the concessionaire has to make it a one-way to San Jose from Orotina to Cuidad Colon.

In fact, the landslides and problems of congestion generated concern by current President, Luis Guillermo Solís, who said last week on his way back and from the Caldera port to inaugurate the new dock, “being a historian and not an engineer, these slopes (retaining walls) are cut sharply and that thing (the road) does sit well”.

The Ruta 27 was inaugurated by Oscar Arias on January 27, 2010, months before Arias left office (May 8, 2010). But it wasn’t until June of that year that the road was put to use.

Today, the road continues to be deemed “incomplete”, as the concessionaire, Global Via and the ministry of Transport argue back and forth on many of the work that …

My personal memory of the inauguration ceremony held at the Orotina intersection, after protestors blocked the (unopened) road at Cuidad Colon.
My personal memory of the inauguration ceremony held at the Orotina intersection, after protestors blocked the (unopened) road at Cuidad Colon.