By Jon Clarke and Anatoly Kurmanaev
POLITICAL parties of all colours have united to oppose a ‘crackpot’ project that would see the world’s biggest train testing track open near Antequera.
Pressure group Antequera Habitable has joined forces with the three main parties in Mollina demanding that the scheme be scrapped.
They are compiling a petition that insists that the plan, which would see 450 hectares of the vega between Mollina and Antequera developed, is ‘unsustainable’.
The double testing track – which would allow trains to drive at speeds of up to 450km/h – would see the uprooting of numerous farms, including vineyards.
With the longest of two tracks being 55km in length, it would dwarf other existing tracks in the US, Japan and the Czech Republic.
The scheme, which the railway authority (ADIF) insist will create 7000 jobs, has already been allocated 344 million by the central government.
It is invisaged that work will begin in 2011 and the project be completed by 2015.
But farmers trade unions COAG, Asaja and UPA insist the scheme will destroy the productive area of farmland, known as ‘the vega’.
There is already a project to bring an international airport to the area, and they insist enough is enough.
A spokesman for pressure group Antequera Habitable said that it is planning protests against the project.
“It will destroy a lot of land without bringing economic benefit to the area,” he said. “We need our politicians to bring sustainable schemes, not destructive ones.”
He added: “This shows a lack of respect for our district and the testing tracks will destroy high quality land, in particular of olives and vines.”
The government had hoped that the hub would become one of the world’s finest, dedicated to research and development of the new-generation of ultra-fast AVE trains.
Now it will be more concerned that its best plans could be rapidly derailed.