New road scheme is claimed to improve links between Huixquilucan (pictured) and Mexico City



FRONT PAGE
SiteSearch
About us
Directories


Mexican road building dispute
Interview with Mexico City's mayor
Mexico's 2012 elections
Mexico's de facto powers
Mexico City market
Mexico City abortion reforms
Development threatensToledo
Fight over Prado Road redesign
Historic cities - Living cities
Les Halles, Paris
Moscow's old city
European cities of culture


City Mayors reports news from towns and cities around the world. Worldwide | Elections | North America | Latin America | Europe | Asia | Africa | Events |


Mayors from The Americas, Europe. Asia, Australia and Africa are competing for the annual World Mayor Award. More


City Mayors ranks the world’s largest as well as richest cities and urban areas. It also ranks the cities in individual countries, and provides a list of the capital cities of some 200 sovereign countries. More


City Mayors reports political events, analyses the issues and depicts the main players. More


City Mayors describes and explains the structures and workings of local government in Europe, The Americas, Asia, Australia and Africa. More


City Mayors profiles city leaders from around the world and questions them about their achievements, policies and aims. More


City Mayors deals with economic and investment issues affecting towns and cities. More


City Mayors reports on how business developments impact on cities and examines cooperation between cities and the private sector. More


City Mayors describes and explains financial issues affecting local government. More


City Mayors lists and features urban events, conferences and conventions aimed at urban decision makers and those with an interst in cities worldwide. More


City Mayors reports urban environmental developments and examines the challenges faced by cities worldwide. More


City Mayors reports on and discusses urban development issues in developed and developing countries. More


City Mayors reports on developments in urban society and behaviour and reviews relevant research. More


City Mayors deals with urban transport issues in developed and developing countries and features the world’s greatest metro systems. More


City Mayors examines education issues and policies affecting children and adults in urban areas. More


City Mayors investigates health issues affecting urban areas with an emphasis on health in cities in developing countries. More


City Mayors examines the importance of urban tourism to city economies. More


City Mayors examines the contributions history and culture make to urban society and environment. More


City Mayors describes the history, architecture and politics of the greatest city halls in the world. More


City Mayors invites readers to write short stories about people in cities around the world. More


City Mayors questions those who govern the world’s cities and talks to men and women who contribute to urban society and environment. More


City Mayors profiles national and international organisations representing cities as well as those dealing with urban issues. More


City Mayors reports on major national and international sporting events and their impact on cities. More


City Mayors lists cities and city organisations, profiles individual mayors and provides information on hundreds of urban events. More

Mexico City and Mexico State cannot
bridge differences over road building

By Adriana Maciel, Mexico Editor

21 January 2007: Work on the construction of a bridge and a six-lane traffic distributor road on protected federal land between Mexico City and the State of Mexico - called “Barranca (ravine) de Hueyatlaco” – which was stopped for more than two years, was recently restarted amid raging controversy. Protesters say that the wealthy owners of real estate companies in the State of Mexico have the most to gain, and they further allege that central government has colluded with those companies. They fears that construction, followed by massive housing development, will destroy one of the city’s last ‘oxygen lungs’ and affect water supply.

Edwin Seymour, President of the Association of Residents of Bosques de las Lomas in Mexico City, claims that the works contravene an agreement reached several years ago between residents and Mexico City’s government, under Mayor Andres Manuel López Obrador, that such work would damage the environment and therefore it would not take place. The residents’ association are demanding that the agreement be honoured.

Work has started at the ravine near Huixquilucan, just outside Mexico City, one of the richest municipalities in the State of Mexico. The works are just 60 metres from Mexico City, within the limits of the political subdivision of Cuajimalpa, the wealthiest political subdivision in Mexico City, where furious residents and officials are protesting.

According to Mr Seymour, the most interested parties in the construction of the bridge and road are the real estate companies of the State of Mexico, which are promoting, among other schemes, the Bosque Real development project on 600 hectares. Thousands of houses and apartments for the richest Mexican families are envisaged.

One angry resident in Polanco, Mexico City, accused the State of Mexico of colluding with the real state companies. He claimed that the document signed by the Mexico City government, stating that the road would not be built, was still in force.

Behind the $16m Bosque Real development project are four of the richest men in Mexico. Without adequate road access they would find difficulty in selling the new homes. Research commissioned by the residents’ association found that the road and bridge would cause an increase of 21,000 cars in transit added to the already daily 70,000.

Commission of Metropolitan Development of the Congress, and the head of the political subdivision of Cuajimalpa, Remedios Ledezma, both stated that they would not allow the works to reach beyond Mexico City’s boundary. And the deputies of the PAN and PRD parties said they would not grant a change of land use within Cuajimalpa.

However, in 1995, the Mexico City government granted the necessary licences for the construction of a bridge over Barranca de Hueyatlaco within the limits of Huixquilucan and Cuajimalpa, and in 2004 the Department of the Environment and Natural Resources, together with the National Commission of Water, authorised environmental permits for the works.  Gerardo Ruiz Esparza, Secretary of Communications of the State, said that these authorisations were still in force. He added that “strong interests” were behind the conflict, and he did not rule out political motivations.

Euriel Avila, Coordinator of Deputies of the PRI party in the local congress, said they would not allow the works to be stopped by the city government. “The attitude of officials and deputies of the Federal District in relation to the road in question damages the good relations between both governments” he said.

The Governor of the State of Mexico, Enrique Peña Nieto of the PRI party, insisted that nobody was in it for personal gain. The road works were intended solely to solve the problem of a lack of roads in Huixquilucan and the sparse connections with Mexico City. He questioned the hostility of Cuajimalpa’s residents. But Mexico City Mayor Marcelo Ebrard, on the other hand, said there were many opinions on that matter, and what was necessary was a proper analysis of the issue in order to act for the benefit of citizens.

It is worth mentioning in all this that Governor Peña Nieto and Mexico City’s Mayor Marcelo Ebrard govern the two strongest entities in the country and are already strong contenders for the next presidential period. They can therefore be said to be ”enemies”, with this conflict being seen as a test of their political strengths.


Mexico City Mayor Marcelo Ebrard questions the need for the new road scheme


Also by Adriana Maciel
Authorities ready to go to war against criminal street gangs
Poverty, family disintegration, violence at home, lack of opportunity, poor education, social inequality and drugs. Those are the ingredients of an explosive cocktail making Latin American cities some of the most violent areas of the world.

In the extreme north of Latin America, the Maras (the Central American term for gang) is the rising form of organised violence that is the scourge of El Salvador, Honduras, Guatemala and southern Mexico - expanding more and more to that country’s centre - and into Colombia, Brazil and other South American countries.

The Maras is a street gang formed by excluded young people. It originated in Los Angeles, California, in the 1960s. The Mara 18 (in those days the gang from 18th street) was quite powerful in its quarter and when the Mara Salvatrucha (Mara 13) attempted to enter that quarter, a gang war started that has been going on ever since.

Those gangs were mostly made up of Latin migrants from Mexico and El Salvador, the latter fleeing from their country’s civil war. In the early 1980s the gangs spread to other US cities incorporating other groups of migrants from Honduras, Peru, Ecuador, Guatemala and Nicaragua. It spread throughout Latin America after many of its members were convicted in the US and jailed and then later deported. Maras members exceed 100,000 in Central America - counting only those who have gone through the initiation ritual. More