The Dominican Republic is not repairing its cities’ bridges and storm drains and yet is constructing an elaborate set of mountain highways. Haiti will soon do the same. Surreal? No. Not if you appreciate that a client government serves its masters but not its people.
Wherever minerals are to be exploited, the roads and ports come first, because they are the veins through which the wealth will be transported abroad. The politicians take their share, like so many tumors and inaugurate the “infrastructure” — maybe name it after themselves.
Odd that those conservationists who have so passionately condemned Hispaniola’s charcoal production are now mum about the construction of these cross-mountain highways, which represent an irreversible and more extreme case of deforestation. Is it possible that these horrific scars through the last refuges of many of the island’s endangered reptiles, amphibians, birds, and even mammals, toward the open pits from which the land will be bled, are wholly invisible to those blinded by greed?
Dady Chery, Editor
Fernandez breaks ground for US $293 M cross-mountain highway
Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic — Public Works minister Victor Diaz Rua on Wednesday morning [April 25] said the cross-mountain highway will cost US $293.0 million to build, and will take two years to complete.
President Leonel Fernandez broke ground Wednesday for the reconstruction of the first of three proposed North-South routes across the rugged Central Mountains, to link the regions Cibao and Sur.
He inaugurated the works for the highway Juan Aldrián-Rancho Arriva-Sabana Larga-San José de Ocoa-Cruce de Ocoa, the Public Works Ministry said.
The 83 kilometer, two-lane highway will require 15 new bridges, the construction of eight more and two overpasses.
Public Works said the new north-south link will be 76 kilometers shorter than the current route through Santo Domingo.
In addition to the announced route, the two other proposals include Santiago-Jarabacoa-Constanza-San Jose de Ocoa, and Montecristi-San Juan de la Maguana, along the border with Haiti.
Source: Dominican Today
Flooded streets from downpours spark protests, snarl traffic
Santiago, Dominican Republic — The downpours of the last 24 hours [April 25] have drenched several towns of Santiago province, flooding streets schools in the communities Licey and Tamboril, where the Licey river breached its banks.
The floodwaters have damaged houses and businesses, forcing inhabitants from the east part of the province to flee to higher ground. Some blame part of their calamity on a bridge they affirm was incorrectly built at Santiago’s North Bypass avenue.
Residents in the district Las Palomas, Limonal, Monte Adentro and Pontezuela, among others say the rising waters stem from a bridge which they believe acts as a dam.
Despite the downpours, residents took to the streets to protest by torching tires to demand that the authorities solve the problem. The protests snarled traffic on the Duarte highway yesterday afternoon, between Santiago and Licey.
Source: Dominican Today
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