Marbella’s Vuelta preparations enrage visitors and business owners

SEAFRONT business owners in Marbella are up in arms over work being done to prepare the area to host the first stage of the Vuelta de España cycling race.
On August 22, the event will turn millions of viewers’ attention to the city and in particular its coast as cyclists race along 7.4 kilometres of seaside route from Puerto Banus to Marbella’s pleasure port.
Yet in spite of the fact that the location was announced months ago, work needed to remove architectural barriers along the route has only just started, sparking complaints from tourists and businesspeople.
As drills blast away, restaurant owners complain that their earnings have been halved.
“Nobody wants to sit and have lunch with this dust and racket,” said Ramon Montes from Los Mellizos restaurant.
To add insult to injury, beach bar owners in the La Fontanilla area arrived to work one morning to find the access to their establishments cut off, leading prospective customers and delivery drivers alike to turn away.
Playa Europa manager Enrique Payan complained: “Haven’t they had time to do this beforehand? The Vuelta was announced months ago.”
Meanwhile Blanca Fernandez, Works and Infrastructures councillor, stated that the work was unavoidable but would be completed as quickly as possible.
Although the council was sorry for the inconvenience caused, Fernandez said, there was little it could do as the work had not been done beforehand by the former council team and the race could not be held without the modifications.
The councillor also stressed that once race day arrived it would all be worth it as the promotion the area and businesses would get from the event was priceless.

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