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Businessmen "Fed Up" with Highway Department Delays

By: Patrick Ellis | Real Acapulco News - 06 January, 2011

(Acapulco, JG 6 January) Representatives of Acapulco’s business sector have announced they are “fed up” with the inability of the federal Department of Transportation to complete any of its Acapulco projects on time. Construction delays continue to cost local businesses untold amounts of money, and the truth is that no one working for the government or the construction companies really knows when the jobs will be done.

The Acapulco chapters of the National Manufacturers Association and the National Chamber of Commerce, together with the Acapulco head of a transportation confederation, pointed specifically at the overpass being built over the Escénica to connect Puerto Marqués to El Cayaco, the widening of the road between Mozimba and Pie de la Cuesta, and the renovations on the Bulevar Lázaro Cárdenas, which leads out of Acapulco towards Mexico City. The business leaders feel insulted, saying that the government officials and their hand-picked construction companies are just having fun with the people of Acapulco, extending the work well past the deadlines. The business leaders also are pressing for the resignation of the Highway Department’s director in Guerrero state, for being incompetent.

The mayor of Acapulco has already protested the delays, threatening to organize a citizens´ sit-in at the offices of the Department of Transportation in Mexico City. He, like the business leaders, feels that Guerrero, being a poor southern state, often receives step-child treatment from the power players in Mexico City. The result is the loss of millions of pesos to small business operators in the affected areas. Restaurants and hotels in Pie de la Cuesta are especially affected, as few motorists want to confront the long traffic delays just to get there from Acapulco.

No official explanations have been given for the delays in completing the highway construction projects. In the case of the cloverleaf at Puerto Marqués, the construction was halted at least twice for failure by the construction company to obtain necessary environmental permits. Workers were throwing construction waste into a protected mangrove lake by the bay of Puerto Marqués. On another occasion, they cut the 48-inch water main that passes under the roadway, denying water to over half of Acapulco for nearly a week.

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