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Areas Urbanism & territory, Tourism and Economic activities Mobility

If ferry companies won’t guarantee first and final passage to Eivissa, Balearic government will

foto mesa transport 2Formentera’s president and mobility chief, Alejandra Ferrer and Rafael González, respectively, were in Palma today for a meeting of the Committee on Maritime Transport in the Balearics (Mesa de Transport Marítim de les Illes Balears) chaired by regional mobility and housing minister Marc Pons.

Pons said officials would be sitting down in the off season to talk with ferry companies about the importance of the early-bird and late-night inter-island service, and to ascertain whether any are interested in taking up the cause. An answer is due in two weeks, and will be announced at the next commission gathering, scheduled on Formentera. According to Pons, if no company comes forward to offer 6.00am Eivissa-bound and 10.30pm return service, “the Govern balear will open up bidding and put them to tender”.

President Ferrer highlighted the work invested in moving things this far, and traced the question of first-and-final ferry passage back to 2010, when legislation on maritime transport became law. “These two journeys are very important. For islanders, it’s the difference between making the first daily plane out of Eivissa, getting home at night, visiting loved ones in the hospital or, for young people, completing studies on Eivissa. There are many valid needs at stake here”, Ferrer declared.

The president said early-bird and late-night ferry service must be “not just socially sustainable, but environmentally and financially sustainable as well”. Also at the encounter were the director general of the sea and air transport division of the Balearic government and representatives of regional ministries of environment, tourism, employment, health, and of the Mallorca, Menorca and Eivissa island councils, not to mention the CAEB, APEAM, CCOO, UGT, Marina Mercant, and chambers of commerce across the archipelago.

25 November 2019
Department of Communication
Consell de Formentera

Winter hours in effect for metred parking across Formentera

zona-regulada-d-aparcamentvjThe Formentera Council's mobility department reports that from tomorrow, Friday 1 November, winter hours will take effect across metred parking areas in La Savina, Sant Francesc and Sant Ferran. Meanwhile, in Es Pujols, traffic wardens will cease to enforce the pay-to-park system in zona blava (blue zone) spaces until the start of summer. Elsewhere metred parking will be in force Monday to Saturday, from 9.00am to 2.00pm and 4.00pm to 8.00pm, until 1 May. Parking is free on Sundays and bank holidays.

Cars parked in blue zone spots can remain there up to three days, unlike in summer, when the limit is one day. Green zone (zona verda) spots on the other hand are reserved for authorised vehicles, which can be parked for no more than three days, and La Savina residents carrying proof of residence, who can leave vehicles parked for as many as 15 days, just like in summer.

31 October 2019
Department of Communication
Consell de Formentera

Formentera to back educational push for road safety

The offices of the interior and mobility of the Consell de Formentera report that this winter they will steer a campaign to encourage freight drivers, tourists and islanders at large to respect rules of the road and highway safety. Interior chief Josep Marí placed serious accidents on local roads at the centre of the decision—an effort he described as seeking to “stem further mishaps and improve safety on our roads”.

The plan’s architects say the idea is simple: that motorists should respect movement and traffic regulations like speed limits when they get behind the wheel. Another aim is to boost compliance with safety measures—which might mean using a helmet and seatbelt, or avoiding operating a vehicle after consuming alcohol or drugs, or while texting. Another reminder will include the importance of completing the required vehicle inspection (ITV) and keeping insurance current.

Message for island youth

Organisers will even take to social media as they send a message to young people about the dangers of forgoing safety regulations when driving motorbikes and motor-scooters. The island’s school liaison officer will also be on hand to reinforce the message as part of local law enforcement’s annual road safety campaign (Educació Vial).

Greater police presence

Councillor Marí said Formentera Local Police and Guardia Civil would increase stops on highways to see if drivers “are taking the campaign’s message to heart as they get on the road”.


16 October 2019
Department of Communication
Consell de Formentera

At Madrid Trafic expo, Formentera shares ‘regulated entry’ approach to tackling vehicle saturation

foto-presentacio---formentera-1Mobility chief Rafael González stood before crowds at the Trafic expo today in Madrid to talk about formentera.eco, the island’s system to restrict the flow of incoming vehicles. Attendees of the fair, which runs 8 to 11 October, will learn about safe and sustainable mobility.

Councillor González gave an overview of the mobility projects launched on the island in recent years, from nature trails, pedestrian zones and metred parking in the island’s main urban centres, to sustainable vehicle promotion, tightened regulations on vehicle access to places like Ses Salines nature reserve and Es Cap de Barbaria lighthouse, adoption of the first “Sustainable Mobility Plan” and rollout of formentera.eco.

On that last note, González described the system as without precedent anywhere in Spain, and highlighted, apart from the growing popularity of sustainable mobility options like public transport and cycling, success in one priority area in particular: “breaking the trend of ever more saturated roads during the high season”.

Looking ahead
González described public transport improvements and expansion of the nature trail network as areas of acute importance moving forward, not to mention engaging with local non-profits, NGOs and businesses in the creation of a roadmap for regulation next summer. “It will reflect the fact that sustainable mobility is synonymous with sustainable tourism”, said the councillor. “This, together with other conservation measures, is what we’re relying on so that Formentera is still around for future generations to enjoy.”


9 October 2019
Department of Communication
Consell de Formentera

One year in, taking stock of scheme to count and cap vehicles on Formentera

Foto balanc formentera.ecoConsell de Formentera president Alejandra Ferrer and mobility councillor Rafael González seized the opportunity of Sustainable Mobility Week to discuss an official progress report on the first phase—from the start of July to the end of August—of a system to regulate the number of vehicles brought onto the island.

President Ferrer retraced the path to Formentera's becoming an island where mobility is increasingly sustainable. Concerning this summer's rollout, Ferrer declared, “we met two of our main goals: no surprises or hitches, and a total vehicle count in tune with last summer's figure, breaking with our previous upward trend”.

The president stressed that the participation of islanders and businesses had been key to making the experience a success. “Today we're that much closer to the sustainable island every one of us aspires to”, she said. “During this period of reflection, we'll be meeting with stakeholders in our island's social and business spheres”, she added, explaining that the “Consell d'Entitats will prepare and vote on guidelines to be followed next season”.

Formentera.eco
For his part, Councillor González pointed out that an average of 20,595 vehicles were on the road in July and August. “We saw our lowest figure—17,834 vehicles with authorisation to be on the road—on the first of July”, González said. The high came 10 August, when the total was 21,929. Stacking up this year's maximum estimated total against the same figure in summer 2018, there was a two per-cent drop.

The councillor also highlighted €59,512 in total returns from a levy on incoming vehicles, pointing out that tourists paid a per-diem rate of €1 to drive cars and €0.50 to drive scooters. Nineteen tickets for violations of the new rules were issued as well; they are currently being processed.

Keeping tabs on vehicle traffic
Sharing data from tallies conducted in the first half of August, González held out an 8% drop in the average number of cars on local highways. Data from Balearic Port Authority (APB) indicate the amount of incoming and outgoing vehicle traffic rose by 1.9% in July and August, which the councillor accounted for by pointing out that “in summer 2018 we saw year-on-year growth of 13%, so we're looking at a slowdown in the acceleration of vehicles entering and exiting Formentera via the port”.

Public transport
In the peak period of August, tallies of riders getting on and off public transport reflected a 7.6% uptick compared to 2018. Averaging for July and August, the upswing was 1.6%.

Cycling
More good news came from manual tallies of cyclists on the network of nature trails, or rutes verdes, which revealed a 28% increase in bicycle use compared to 2017 data (records weren't kept in 2018). “The goal is to implement the Sustainable Mobility Plan, which lawmakers passed in 2018, and to make Formentera ever more sustainable”, said González. “There's still more work to be done.”


19 September 2019
Department of Communication
Consell de Formentera

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