Paradise Lost?

LAST UPDATED: 18 Jun, 2008 @ 17:48
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As Tarifa gets a double black flag for its new urbanisation policy, the Olive Press explores its plans for sleepy Atlanterra

By Jenny Kean

ACCORDING to estate agents’ blurb Atlanterra is a lost paradise. But if two major schemes get the go-ahead it is more likely to be a case of paradise lost.

Between them the projects would triple the hotel capacity of the resort, which sprawls along a dead end road south of Zahara de los Atunes.

In total there will be 2,650 more hotel rooms, 2,100 new homes and three new golf courses.

The largest of the two projects (called Cabo de Plata) looks set to get the “green” light from the PSOE-run regional government.

The IU has denounced the complex as “over the top”, and will be raising the issue in the regional parliament.

Tarifa councillor Javier Mohedano likened the project to the “bankrupt and out of date urban development seen on the Costa del Sol”.

The project has already been turned down once, in February last year, for failing to guarantee a water supply and in concerns over design.

But according to the PSOE-led Tarifa council, developer Grupo Q now has the support of the Andalucia water board.

The Junta is expected to pass the project in the next few months, despite significant opposition from both locals and environmental groups.

Tarifa Mayor Miguel Manella is supporting the project insisting private investment would ease the shortfall in local public services.

“We need the golf and hotels if we’re to have a tourist complex that’s able to function more than four months a year,” he said.

But as IU boss Mohedano explained: “If services are what’s needed, then there should be public investment, not more housing that encourages a Costa del Sol-style planning model.”

A further project by developer, Grupo Veintidos is also now vying for permission.

This second scheme next to Cabo de Plata is a 600 hectare area known as the Cortijo del Moro.

The land was bought in 2004 and it now has plans for a €72 million development, including 1,100 new houses, two golf courses and hotels with 1,350 rooms.

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  1. More like paradise already lost. They’ve pushed open roads all the way up the hillside behind Playa de los Alemanes. If it carries on like this the Costa de la Luz will just become another Costa de la Concrete.

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