Amparo development, Ferry subsidies, Mothering Sunday etc.

TODAYS PHOTO : Thanks to Tobi … another great scene from the ’25 Fontes’ walk in Rabical.

Source : Diário de Notícias 3/5/2008

In a big and very important feature, the development of the area of ‘Amparo’is under debate with some major differences from those originally included in the 2001 plans. Indeed, the Diario refers to ‘ghettoizing’ in some areas. The new plans are in public debate until 8th May.

The area of ‘Amparo’ lies to the west of Funchal, futher west than the concrete jungle of Ajuda, and in the low lying area that was originally earmarked for the building of a new football stadium for Maritimo. THe area covers 214 hectares (originally 142 in 2001).

In principle, the development was aimed at minimising the use of reinforced concrete; providing facilities within the development for the future residents; to include the necessary support infrastructure for a large population centre (such as Schools and Health Centres). If the politicians get their way, those ambitions are practically now in the waste bin.

Under the current proposals, the area will accomodate around 10% of Madeira’s population, and overlap into the area of Sao Martinho absorbing 27% of it’s population. By 2016 it is estimated to have a population of around 30,000 people. 20 to 30% of these will be elderly or pensioners.

Residential buildings will rise upto 12 storeys (maximum of 7 storeys in the 2001 plan).

– The other main changes being debated form the original plan are:

2 schools (1 in 2008 plan)

– 1 infant centre (0 in 2008 plan)

– 1 covered sports centre (Removed in 2008 plan, with an open air games zone, and kiddies park)

– 1 Social Centre (0 in 2008)

– 40% of the development reserved for ‘green areas'(nothing shown in 2008 plan).

Following a news story reported on this blog a week or so ago, an update from the Diario as follows:

“(Despite what) this newspaper reported in one of it’s recent editions, that the travel agents that operate on Madeira had received information from ‘Naviera Armas Ferry Company’ (saying there would be no resident’s subsidies), there is now the possibility that resident passengers from Madeira will benefit from a travel subsidy of 60 euros – just as already happens with the airlines – in the new ferry journeys between Portimão and Funchal starting in June, announced by the ferry operator”. 

“Although the information divulged by Naviera Armas was premature and denied in these pages, the NEWSPAPER confirmed with the responsible authorities that the possibility is to be studied and analyzed, being a matter of the Portuguese State’s membership of the European Union, and the extension of the travel subsidy to maritime transport.

The article seems to be saying that the travel subsidy is an entitlement regardless of whether the journey between Madeira and Portugal (return) is by air or sea, and it should attract the €60 discount allowed under European rules, but the debate may be due to the Spanish ownership of the Ferry Operator or owner.

MESSAGE FROM JANICE F: Today is mothering sunday and it seems that everyone is out visiting, there are small children carrying gift wrapped presents. Florists are as busy here as in the UK as crowds gather to find the perfect arrangement, or if your budget won’t streatch that far a simple single rose loving tied with a bow says just as much. Or if you want to be totally different you can buy an electrical item as we saw when in Worten yesterday observing an assistant on the floor fighting with paper sticky tape and ribbon. This was highly amusing. I myself am sitting eagerly waiting for my gift that my son says is in the post (ha ha). Well the washing machine has just finished and is waiting to be emptied and filled again (nothing new just another mothers days to me) Janice.

All running a bit late today .. will try and do better tomorrow!

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