San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Highway to Caldera Delayed Again

Construction of the new, and highly touted road linking Ciudad Colón, in the west Central Valley, to the central Pacific port of Caldera, due to begin construction five years ago, has stalled yet again.

The highway, whose plans were drawn more than 30 years ago, and whose five principal bridges were completed in 2004, would measure 77 kilometers and cut one-half hour from the drive time required from San José to the Pacific coast, thereby alleviating much of the traffic on the heavily-used and mountainous route between San José and Orotina (TT, Feb. 24, 2006).

According to the daily La Nación, administrative delays in obtaining funding and loan security from credit banks have again delayed the permit process for Autopistas del Sol, the Spanish-Tico-Portuguese company that has a concession contract to complete and maintain the highway.

Luis Diego Vargas, in charge of government concessions, stated that an addendum to the original $200 million contract is in process, and would hopefully be complete within four weeks, at which point construction could initiate.


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