Sunday, June 16, 2024

Transport secretary predicts 2-year-old highway will need major surgery

The two-year old Cuernavaca Paso Express highway will likely require “major surgery,” according to the federal communications and transportation secretary.

The 14.5-kilometer stretch of road has been plagued with problems since it opened, including the appearance of a sinkhole in July 2017 that trapped a car, killing both occupants.

Javier Jiménez Espriú didn’t provide details about the work that will be carried out on the highway but said that technical studies are already under way. He stressed that there is no current risk to motorists using the road.

“We’re carrying out a study of the entire Paso Express, it will take a couple of months,” Jiménez told reporters at the National Palace, adding that all of the “delicate points” have already been identified.

“Everything’s under control and there’s no risk of any serious issue . . . Once we have the complete study we’ll probably carry out a major surgery,” he said.

Morelos authorities warned last August that there were at least five danger spots on the 10-lane highway, which was built by a private consortium consisting of the companies Aldesa and Epccor and cost almost 1 billion pesos (US $52.7 million at today’s exchange rate).

The highway’s problems, and in particular the sinkhole, were a significant source of tension between the previous federal government and former Morelos governor Graco Ramírez.

Former transportation secretary Gerardo Ruiz Esparza repeatedly denied responsibility for the problems, claiming that the Morelos government, the municipality of Cuernavaca and the principal contractor were to blame.

Ramírez said he warned Ruiz and former president Enrique Peña Nieto that the highway wasn’t ready to open when it did but they failed to heed his advice.

Local residents were aware of drainage problems on the section of the highway where the sinkhole appeared and warned officials about a damaged culvert but no action was taken to repair or replace it.

The secretary also said that the environmental impact statement for the Santa Lucía airport will be ready in coming days, whose completion will allow the project – currently stalled because of legal action – to begin.

Source: Reforma (sp) 

Have something to say? Paid Subscribers get all access to make & read comments.
Two damaged SUVs after a car accident.

President-elect Sheinbaum unharmed after a deadly accident involving her motorcade

The crash killed an elderly woman and injured another person. No injuries were reported among Sheinbaum and her team.
Young fruit seller looks at his cell phone in Mexico City

Over 80% of Mexicans are now internet users, up 9.7 points from 2020

Connectivity has increased steadily in Mexico, particularly among the young, though there is still a digital divide between urban and rural areas.
A lake with low water levels in Toluca

Below-average rainfall worsens drought conditions as Mexico awaits summer rains

The country is in the grip of one of the worst droughts in the last decade, with half the usual amount of rain so far this year.