Residents of the Pàmies de Reus Urbanization claim to restrict car access
The Urbanització Pàmies wants to put an end to its narrow and potholed sidewalks. It asks to restrict car access from Salou avenue and prioritize pedestrians in this area, in which the neighborhood made up largely of older people coincides with various facilities aimed at the elderly. "People go out for a walk with the wheelchair, with the shopping cart or the child's cart, and they have to go down to the road because they can't pass," denounces the neighborhood manager Lorenzo Montull. "We already went to the City Council seven years ago to ask for the area to be pedestrianized or, if it couldn't, to find a solution, but it's the same," he criticizes.
Montull sees one thing clearly: "The regulations state that the sidewalks must measure at least one meter, and here they do not exceed 60 centimeters," he says. “Curbs are undone, tiles are missing, there are no lower sections to go up and down... everything is wrong; we have many inconveniences and very little desire on the part of the City Council », he adds. And, therefore, "we think it should be pedestrianized." The urbanization does not have a neighborhood association, but "at the time we already collected signatures in this regard, around a hundred."
The area is wedged between Salou avenue and Astorga street, and includes Antiquaris, Escultor Sunyol, Vicaria and Condesito streets, with the intersection of Jardín de los Poetas and Papallona street. In that radius "we have three nursing homes, in addition to the CAP Marià Fortuny, and this does not favor anyone," highlights the neighborhood manager. Montull regrets that the municipal government "only looks at the center of the city" and "plans reforms in the surroundings of the Plaza de la Llibertat or the Paseo Mata, fixes the suburbs so that they are pedestrianized, but here it seems that it only collects taxes".
Sources from the City Council consulted in this regard respond that, in the last mandate, the consistory "has dedicated nearly 800,000 euros from the master plan for sidewalks in this area." The amount, as specified, is divided between "about 380,000 euros awarded between 2020 and 2021 and another 400,000 budgeted."
With the car or in the wheelchair
The environment of the urbanization was, this Tuesday morning, a coming and going of people who, indeed, ran into obstacles derived from the dimensions of the sidewalks and the circulation of vehicles. "It is true that they are very narrow and I, for example, with the cart, am forced to go on the road," explained Jeni Ledesma. "And if you add to that that there are many roundabouts...", she stressed. However, the possibility of pedestrianizing generated doubts. “Parking in this part is difficult; everyone has her point of view and I would fix the sidewalks », she specified.
For Encarna Cruz, "in addition to the sidewalks, traffic lights don't last very long and older people have problems crossing because they don't have time." "I don't have a car and the truth is that it wouldn't hurt if they made it a pedestrian," she indicated. Another passer-by, Johana Faría, also admitted that "living here, every day I come across these small sidewalks" and "when the grandparents come with their wheelchairs, it is impossible to pass and they have to get off the road." "In this area there is a lot of nursing home and elderly population and it would not be a bad idea, for me, to pedestrianize it," she said.
And for Guadalupe, what helped her on the way home was "the cane that I carry to support myself." "I'm holding on so nothing happens to me," she commented. And he confirmed that "the floor is very damaged, tiles are missing everywhere, I walk with the shopping cart and I have a terrible time." “If, at least, there were no cars passing by, I could go down the middle of the street calmly, but now that's not possible either,” she said.
“What are they waiting for to fix all this?” asks Montull. But it is not the only thing. “We have utility poles in the middle of the sidewalks, where there are also signs,” he points out. The aerial wiring arranged on poles bursts in the middle of the passage of people who, once again, have to go down to the road to continue the route. "And if, at the very least, there were ramps for it, then still, but there aren't any either," warns the neighborhood manager.
Widening the sidewalks might seem like the simplest option, but then "they would eat up the road and the space for cars." Hence, "pedestrianization is an option." Montull recounts that "there is tremendous traffic between Salou avenue and Astorga street" and says that "they pass through here to save going out through Sant Bernat Calbó and Plaza del Canal." For this reason, one of the proposals would be to restrict traffic from Salou avenue and that the Urbanització Pàmies "be ordered with a single platform and a single entrance in front and another in the back" while "neighbors could access, circulating inside the area and parking normally as, for example, those who come to the residences; it is not to completely close traffic but to reduce circulation ».
"The sidewalks have to be fixed by noses, as a rule, but what we want is for pedestrianization to be studied," says Montull, who says that "a project should be done, find ways to solve mobility and that people could give their opinion and be happy."
The Urbanització Pàmies 2 bus stop is another trouble spot. “It has been approved for a long time but it has not been updated, it does not have a marquee or platform as it should because they tell us that the cars run a lot and that it cannot be,” details the neighborhood manager. And he stresses that "it's the same as with the rest: people can't use it safely."
“There is a lack of maintenance in all aspects”
The complaints of the Urbanització Pàmies are not limited to mobility. The neighborhood manager Lorenzo Montull denounces that "we have come to this due to a persistent lack of maintenance over time" that also affects "many other aspects, from lighting to pruning trees." "We pay our taxes, we don't understand why they ignore us and, in fact, they have an obligation to respond," says Montull.
Other neighbors maintain that in the surrounding parks "there is a lack of cleanliness and we have come to find people's feces or used tampons" and some express that "since there is less surveillance, many people do not collect the dog's excrement." They agree that "it happens because we are not the center."