The poor condition of the highway between the northern border and Mazatlán has brought mayors and governors from two states together to lobby for improvements.
The mayor of Hidalgo del Parral, Chihuahua, is spearheading the effort to stop further deterioration of the highway and boost the region’s economic activity and tourist appeal.
The two-lane highway runs from Mazatlán, Sinaloa, to Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua, passing through the cities of Durango and Parral.
But the poor surface means traffic is being lost.
“We are losing transportation and movement of merchandise, yet there is the possibility that the highway could be the best option in the region, without taking into consideration that we could make it one of the best tourist routes in the country, going from the birthplace of [Mexican Revolution general and hero] Pancho Villa to the place where he was assassinated,” said Parral Mayor Alfredo Lozoya Santillán.
Eight municipalities in Durango — Canatlán, San Juan del Río, Rodeo, San Pedro del Gallo, Villa Hidalgo, Villa Ocampo, Indé and the capital city, Durango — would benefit from the renewal of highway 45, along with the Chihuahua municipalities of Parral, Villa Matamoros, Valle de Zaragoza and Satevó.
The mayor said the benefits would be felt in three states with a relatively small investment, which he estimated at 3 billion pesos (US $147 million).
The Chihuahua mayors involved in the project have presented an initiative before the state Congress, which will do the same before the federal Chamber of Deputies, asking for the necessary funds and to finish the work in three years.
Source: El Universal (sp)