Edition 1518
23 March 2019
Edition: 1518

Read this week's issue online exactly as it appears in print.

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Close to 1,000 people sign petition against construction of hotel on Alvor riverside

by Carrie-Marie Bratley, in Algarve · 26-07-2018 14:20:00 · 0 Comments

A public petition launched against the construction of a new four-star hotel on a plot of land above the riverside of the Algarve fishing village of Alvor (Portimão), whose project is currently under active consideration by Portimão council for the issuing of a licence, has been met with overwhelming disapproval from locals.

Close to 1,000 people sign petition against construction of hotel on Alvor riverside

Property and business owners as well as local residents and regular visitors have expressed concerns about the “significant excavations” that would be required in the heart of the hamlet and the disruption the work would cause.
Should it be given the green light, the hotel would be built in the very centre of Alvor, on a plot of unused cliff-top scrubland wedged between two of the village’s busiest areas, the Alvor riverside, and the pedestrianised main bar street, Rua Dr. Frederico Ramos Mendes, which runs through the heart of the village.
According to the petition, blue- prints show the hotel would have five stories – two above the level of Rua Infante Dom Henrique and three below – and two main entrances, one on Rua dos Pescadores and the other on Rua da Ribeira, next to the ecological bins.
Concerns are that, should it be approved, construction work on the hotel could cause “countless consequences” for the village and its businesses. Not least that “vibrations and tremors caused by the pneumatic machinery” working the rocky ground could cause “instability to our properties with regard to the solidity of the structures”, the petition’s author stated.
It is feared that excavations for the hotel will be “significant”, to remove the cliff’s rock and earth to “a perimeter of 900 to 1,200 square metres by 12 to 15 metres in height”, from an area that “flanks the rear of houses on Rua Infante Dom Henrique, Rua das Pescadores and Rua Frederico Ramos Mendes”.
The main “presumable consequences” listed in the petition include “cracks and fissures in houses” which “may only appear at the end of the construction with the reduction of the ground due to rains and the weight of the structure”, landslides and rock-falls, among others, notwithstanding general noise and dirt disruption.
“Residents and businesses will suffer great losses with the construction of this building in the heart of the village. Guaranteed, there will be great impact for the population and traders of Alvor, namely due to noise, large machinery, vibrations and trepidation of the ground, and lifting of dust that will harm all the residents and commercial establishments that depend on the tourism. It will become impossible to hang clothes out and work with doors open. (…) Another key point is the rest of residents, non-residents and tourists throughout the year”, the petition argues.
A meeting has been scheduled for 2 August, starting at 4.30pm, at the Alvor Parish Hall, and will involve all local residents and business-owners to discuss the project’s licensing.
“The meeting aims to halt construction for the benefit of the village, residents and businesses”, the petition stresses, adding: “Let’s hope that we attract interested parties and achieve union to keep the heart of the village free of major works and large hotel units that could harm us all”.
Remarks on the public petition’s webpage (http://peticaopublica.com/pview.aspx?pi=PT90126) have seen signees describe the project as “grotesque” and “devastating”.
Observer Ali Myles commented: “The unique charm and beauty of Alvor will be severely compromised as it becomes merely yet another overcrowded resort. Sadly, it could cause existing tourists who visit here time and time again due to its unique qualities, to reconsider and go elsewhere, so it’s kind of ‘false economy’. It is also a disgrace to the local residents who are likely to face significant structural problems to their homes and business properties due to the proposed building work, not to mention the environmental implications such as pollution, sewage/drain systems and traffic congestion. An over-developed over-crowded Alvor will only attract the wrong clientele and will say goodbye to the people who truly love, respect, value and appreciate this beautiful place”.
At the time of going to press close to 1,000 people had signed the petition. The Portugal News asked Portimão council for comment, but none had been received by the close of this edition.

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Edition 1518
23 March 2019
Edition: 1518

Read this week's issue online exactly as it appears in print.

Twitter

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