There are only two surviving Spanish language free papers in the area, the always excellent Actualidad Almanzora and another one, that mirrors the PSOE’s positions, called the Nuevo Levante. You can find this second one in town halls.
Here’s more or less what it says in its October edition about our future, as seen by the socialist brothers from Seville and their pet project for this area, the imaginatively called Llano Central (Central Flatlands).
This project, surprisingly enough still going strong, and despite the enormous damage done to our province and its reputation abroad by the Junta de Andalucía’s planners, is to build an artificial city, the forth largest in the province, with 35,000 homes and fifty hotels, all in an area of fifty square kilometres located between Mojácar, Turre, Bédar, Los Gallardos, Antas, Vera and Garrucha. This area, currently a flat plain which has never been settled, from the Neolithic age forward, is to drain off all building licences from the aforementioned towns to allow this exotic new city to be built. Who will live there? Certainly not the vast number of wealthy retirees from Northern Europe who, as things stand, wouldn’t touch Almería with a bargepole. Spaniards? Why ever for. But wait, the answer is coming.
The project has 3,680 million euros of, ah, public money to be spent on this dearly needed city in the sticks. Building it will require 95,000 workers, of which around 2000 are already here as locally unemployed. The rest would have to come in from outside and, as I see it; stay here in their new apartments in the Llano Central which they will be building.
And then they can open a Rumanian embassy across the road.
A city without museums, noble buildings, parks, beachfront (it’s several kilometres inland), but with fifty hotels! a city under the orders of seven town halls, but without one of its own. So wait a minute, who on earth is oing to want to holiday in such a place, where the sound of drills and the view of cranes and cement lorries would be the main entertainment?
Where would the sewage go? Ah, right. Don't answer that.
So why build it? I think that the ugly word ‘profit’ must figure in here somewhere. The worthless land – fifty million square metres – of the Llano Central will have substantially gone up in price. You bought some at the right time I hope? Then there will be certain juicy contracts. Another reason is that the high-speed-train which will whizz through the city four times a day, stopping in a station to be built on the edge of the local market town of Vera (and slowing down the Almería – Murcia schedule) will need the justification of a steady stream of people disembarking, like something out of the Klondike Gold Rush.
The combined population of our seven towns above is about 25,000 people – and we want to bring in another 70,000. At least the family-run town halls will be watered down a bit in a generation.
The Nuevo Levante is enthusiastic. ‘This will become the motor for tourism in the Levante in the years to come. As the beaches are cleaned up (the Ley de Costas has 200 metres from the sea for public land and 500 metres for hotels), we are compensated by the Llano Central’.