The most westerly area of the Costa del Sol has been longing for a railway service for years. At the moment the only way of travelling between Malaga and Marbella or Estepona is by road. There are buses, but this is not enough, not only due to the large towns in the area but also urbanisations and outlying areas.
Marbella is the only town of over 100,000 inhabitants with no train service. Plans for one have been on the table for more than 20 years. There have been numerous announcements, but then nothing happened. It has been an accumulation of disappointments, no matter which parties have been in power.
The latest Budget includes the laughable sum of 83,000 euros for more studies to be carried out and there are calls for the government to take such an important project more seriously.
Now, there is a new opportunity. Spain is to receive EU funds to help its economy recover from the pandemic. This could be a 'now or never' moment, as the construction of a coastal railway fits perfectly with the aims laid down in the restructuring funds.
The possibility of the project being reactivated has also been welcomed by the mayors of the five municipalities on the eastern coast of the province, Rincón de la Victoria, Vélez-Malaga, Algarrobo, Torrox and Nerja, who want the rail service extended from Malaga to the Axarquía, and point out that these, too, are part of the Costa del Sol.