“At risk of collapse.” That is how a Mijas councillor has described the state of a footbridge over the A-7 motorway by the Fuengirola welcome sign, near the old Hotel Beatriz Palace and the BP petrol station. The southern end of the bridge is in Fuengirola and the northern side is in Mijas district.
The Mijas councillor for Infrastructure, José Carlos Martín (of Ciudadanos), was speaking after receiving the results of a report he ordered on the state of the bridge. The report describes the condition of the bridge, which is the responsibility of the national government, as “terrible” and “at risk of collapse”.
“No one has said that it's going to fall down tomorrow, but if we don't undertake works on the bridge now, things will only get worse in the medium term,” he told SUR on Monday.
Martín also said the bridge was an eyesore in an area popular with tourists. “It gives the impression that we have old and crumbling infrastructure, and that should be rectified,” he added.
The Spanish government recently undertook a programme to assess and repair several of the footbridges on the A-7, but Martín says that this particular bridge was overlooked.
The Mijas councillor said that he would send a letter to Madrid this week, to add to the complaint from the spokesperson for the Ciudadanos party in Fuengirola, Javier Toro, that has already been sent. In his letter Toro highlighted the issues of corrosion on the bridge and stated that the situation is getting worse. The government responded by saying that it was “looking to undertake maintenance work in the local area”.
Meanwhile a sign has appeared this week prohibiting pedestrians from using it, however this is on the Mijas end and not the Fuengirola end and only in Spanish. It has not been cordoned off and pedestrians are continuing to use it.
The issue of footbridges in disrepair is not a new one. A few months ago, the Socialist MP Miguel Ángel Heredia highlighted a similar issue with a bridge in Marbella. He explained that the bridges see a lot of use from local residents and tourists as they connect residential areas to the beach, the coastal path, the Costa del Sol Hospital and many other places. In their current condition, said Heredia, they are a danger to their users.