As part of the austerity measures announced by the government this week, all public works in the pipeline are to be halted. In response to that decision, the Councillor for Infrastructure and Transport for this region, Mario Flores told the Valencian Autonomous Government that he would neither allow cuts nor delays to the work on the AVE (the new high speed rail link). He has already met with the mayoress of Alicante, Sonia Castedo to assure her that the rail link will go ahead
Flores doesn’t know yet which projects will be affected by the austerity package until the announcements are made by the Minister of Promotion, José Blanco but he is adamant that these should not include work on this rail link which is due to be completed to Valencia this year, to Alicante by 2012 and Castellón by 2014. The high speed link to Malaga and other independent communities was completed five years ago. He claims that Valencia has been treated badly in this respect.
I dare say, councillors from each of the autonomous regions of Spain will take a similar stance about cuts been made in their communities. In the end though, it is the government who will be paying for these projects and therefore they will make the decisions. The high speed rail link has already caused a lot of concern in this region with regards to its route. Now that the route is more or less worked out, it is set to cause a whole lot more.