Heavy rains help undermine road
LOOK HERE FOR COMING EVENTS:
NOVEMBER 28,29, 30 Riviera Maya Jazz Festival, 7 p.m. Mamitas Beach off 28th St. N. in Playa del Carmen. Free admission.
NOVEMBER 30 will mark the return of the Music, Art and Food Festival at Latitude 20 Restaurant. Details next week.
COLONOS GENERAL ASSEMBLY at 9:30 a.m. Dec. 7, at Omni Hotel’s Xenote Waterfront Restaurant
ANNUAL ROAD RACE Jan. 19, multi-class, prizes, stay tuned. More later.
LIVE-ABOARD LUXURY YACHT FOR SALE
Rain undermines, closes Kantenah
road loop until repairs can be made
By Betsy Vogt and Staff
You know it has really rained a lot when the roadway is disappearing into a sinkhole. About 5pm last night (Nov. 14) the Bonafont water delivery truck cracked the concrete roadway above what appears to be a cenote or river located under the roadway between Marina Mia and the Kantenah lagoon.
Bahia Kentenah is the roadway that begins at the Catalonia Spa and runs to the beach area and around back to the spa.
Luckily the truck was able to drive out, but the Kantenah loop remained closed until the area can be made safe for traffic.
The reporter viewed the area at 8a.m. last Friday and again at 5 p.m. and observed that the sink hole appeared to be growing. The maintenance man at Marina Mia confirmed that when they built the swimming pool for the condo complex they dug into a cenote and had to put down pilings to support the base of the pool.
Colonos GM Armando Rincon said this week that this has occurred there before. Now, he said, the Colonos is looking at the budget to see if it can afford a more permanent solution to the problem.
Target Heavy Trucks
Meanwhile, the Colonos has announced it is requesting that the developer of the Phase 4 project open the gates from the highway directly into the project area to detour heavy equipment from the Main Gate and the established Colonos roadways, some of which, as underscored by the Kantenah incident, are vulnerable to the double threat of rain and weight.
Earlier this week, drivers of cars and golf carts unaware the loop had been closed off, were seen making u-turns and having to back-track to exit the loop the way they came in.
A lot of rubbish
Some returning snowbirds are wondering what is going on with rubbish collection. Last high season, one could almost set one’s timepiece by the midnight noise of the garbage trucks making their rounds. Now they come by at 9 a.m., or noon, or 2 p.m. or midnight again. So what’s up? But at least they are coming every day now unlike the two or three missed days at a time in September.
We can’t blame this on the Bossa Nova. It’s politics.
Most are aware that a new municipal government was installed in the fall, and with that came the usual confusion and disarray of what the old government leaves behind and what the new government can re-arrange. Passing the stick of power here is unlike the seamless operation it is in the more developed countries. So, according to the Colonos, residents can expect a fluctuation in collection times a while longer until the new administration gets a long-term handle on it.
The confusion has caused some in the area of the Xel-Ha streets near Secret Waters to complain that some private homes and condos aren’t keeping their rubbish contained in bins to keep foraging small animals away, causing a reported uptick of rummaging raccoons in the area and rubbish spilling along the streets. Perhaps the formation of a neighborhood association could address situations like this?
Mother Nature reclaims
reclaimed Playa beaches
The unusually heavy rainy season this year has reclaimed several Playa beaches that were replenished with sand over the last two years, washing away as much as nine feet of beach at the bottom of 16th Street.
Jose Gomez Burgos of Caribbean Sea Tourism Co., reports the beaches in question have returned to the levels of sand depletion they were in before replenishment programs reclaimed the beaches. “We have heard, with great sorrow, tourists say we have ugly beaches,” he said. Some tourists who were here two years ago after the recovery and returned this year now say they will drop the area from their next destination, Gomez said.
Spending good money after bad is evidently what Puerto Aventuras is trying to avoid in its infant beach reclamation project that of last reports was being delayed by the permitting process and the need to modify the barge needed to haul huge boulders to the barrier area of Fatima Bay where temporary work is currently under way.
Playa Red Cross preparing to move
Snowbirds who may rely on the Mexican Red Cross for emergency services in Playa del Carmen should know the clinic’s location on Avenida Juarez has been sold. The clinic is now operating temporarily at the Villas del Sol in Playa until its new headquarters and clinic are opened on or about Dec. 7, said Teresa Jimenez, president of the women volunteers. The clinic and ambulance in Puerto Aventuras Poblado remains in its same location in the former police station at the fork on the main road.
The clinic’s new location and expanded services will be available on Avenue Chemuyil and Technology, about 300 meters from the Mexican Social Security Institute., after Dec. 7.
Services at the clinic include general medicine, ultrasound, chiropractor, clinical laboratory, dental and medical offices along with new specialties in pediatrics and gynecology. The first phase of the new headquarters built on land donated by the municipality includes an operational area, bedrooms and recreation area for staff, machine room, medical services section, ambulance area and emergency room.
A later phase or phases will add a rest area, administration, crisis area and auditorium/training room with a capacity of 100 people. The Red Cross services everyone with fees and donations generally based on ability to pay.
Remember also the Red Cross operates an ambulance and clinic in the Puerto Aventuras Poblado. It is located on the main street in the building formerly housing the police station.
PA part of area tourism promotion
A committee centered in Playa del Carmen, the “heart of Riviera Maya” is working on what it terms “microdestinations” that include the fishing, golf and dolphin attractions of Puerto Aventuras and the ecotourism potential of the village of Uxuxubi, which is west of Akumal but within the Solidarity perimeter.
Jesus Martin Medina, of the Council for Tourism and Ecology, said it decided to center its efforts on Playa del Carmen precisely because it is surrounded by micro-destinations like Puerto Aventuras that are likely to help attract more tourists to the general area.
The committee hopes to promote areas that have a good chance of increasing their potential for attracting visitors.
Doing its part, the Latitude 20 Restaurant in the Puerto Aventuras Resort Community, a/k/a Paradise, hosted its second annual Halloween Party and, even in the low season without the influx of snowbirds, attracted another roughly 130 people including ghosts, goblins, witches and pirates (see photo) who remained dry (on the outside) despite the wet weather experienced here in an extended rainy season.
“We’re probably the only restaurant here with a full roof,” said co-owner Peter Metrick. “We also had a wedding here. Ninety people attended and not one of them got wet.” Danny Fuentes, the eatery’s chef and Peter’s partner, said the turnout was just about the same as last year. “It might be on its way to becoming an event…the Halloween party to go to” he said.
Several restaurants that were here in Centro last year are gone, two of them being replaced by new enterprises and two of them leaving a gap like a missing tooth in the Dolphin Walk ambience where tables, candles, chairs and silverware attracted the attention of passersby.
On other commercial fronts, if you ever plan on going to the upscale Liverpool Store in Playa don’t break your neck to get there early. The place doesn’t open until 11 a..m. And Chedraui Market building across the highway still has several retail bays for rent, with only one new business, a pet food store, opening there since the last high season.
Federal police planning
a new outpost in Playa
A federal police administrative outpost is likely to be built in Playa del Carmen on land donated by the municipality in order to increase “presence and coordination” between the various police agencies operating in the area. The exact location was not revealed.
Hector Gonzalez Valdepena, state coordinator of the federal police in Q. Roo, described Playa del Carmen as a “strategic point” for quick mobilization of federal and other forces along the coast, indicating that its location roughly midway on the Riviera Maya serves that purpose better than would a Cancun location on the extreme northern end of the Riviera.
He said there is a very low crime rate along the stretch of 307 and that the impetus of the federal initiative is to diminish the high rate of accidents in the area.
In that vein, returning snowbirds might take note of the new filtro station being constructed closer to Calica, just a few miles from Puerto Aventuras. It is not immediately known if the new filtro will replace the one near Liverpool on the outskirts of Playa Centro.
In line with this, many Puerto Aventurans have been complaining about the lack of lights along the highway from Puerto to Playa, noting that the absence of lighting is quite probably contributing to the high accident rate mentioned by the federal police spokesman. Turn on the lights, turn down the number of accidents!
Compiled from staff, contributor and media reports
EXTENDED RAINY SEASON continued to dampen the amount of business being done by retailers and restaurants here and in Playa, but a surprising spending spree occurred on the holiday “Good Weekend” with some retailers reporting 80 percent increase in sales, some of that attributable to early Christmas shopping…MORE STREET SIGNS on busy 30th Avenue, from Constituentes to Colosio Avenue to the north will be a big help for visitors as Playa continues to expand northward…AMERICAN Harris English, 24, won last week’s Mayakoba Classic golf tourney with a nearly perfect game…PRISON OFFICIALS in Cozumel have rejected a plan to use extra space being provided by a prison expansion to house prisoners from the mainland to prevent overcrowding there…TOURIST POLICE in Playa del Carmen have been taking courses in English to learn enough of the language basics to better assist visitors…TWO MEXICAN CREWMEN were killed in the crash of a private jet in waters off Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., on Tuesday, and recovered along with wreckage by the U.S. Coat Guard. The plane was headed to Cozumel. Two other crew members are missing…LOCAL RESTAURATEURS are complaining about a projected increase from 11 to 16 % in the value added tax (VAT) on food come January and urging restaurateurs to take measure to keep costs down and value up for visitors in order to maintain a competitive edge with the rest of the Caribbean..
Phrase a Week…By Gloria Contreras, state certified interpreter
When will the sun shine again? In Spanish, you would say, “Cuándo brillará el sol otra vez? ”
Anyone interested in learning the language can please contact Ms. Contreras by email at email@example.com or Cel: 984-108-3517 .
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AA and Alanon meetings…
AA and ALANON meetings are held at the public library at the Colegio as follows:
AA Tuesdays at 5:30 p.m; Thursdays at 6 p.m. and Saturdays at noon. ALANON meeting is held Mondays at 5:30 p.m., also at the library. Meetings are “open” and non-members are welcomed to attend.