Rincón de la Victoria wants to take the lead in the ambitious project as part of the Senda Azu (blue path); the initiative created in 2019 by Malaga’s provincial authority, the Diputación, to enhance the value Malaga province’s coastline. It has been designed to complement the Senda Litoral (coastal path) which connects the 181 kilometres of coastline from Nerja to Manilva for walkers.
This month Rincón de la Victoria is hoping to finalise the project to install the first artificial reefs in front of the El Cantal cliffs to promote tourism and is working on the construction of a jetty in La Cala del Moral for boats up to seven metres in length.
During a meeting held to present the project, president of the Diputación and mayor of Rincon, Francisco Salado, explained that they were going to install a series of large blocks "of biodegradable, non-polluting materials", to enable marine life to regenerate and also to promote tourism and underwater activities.
"I remember when I was a child, 40 years ago, you went to the beach and there was a lot of seaweed, now you see much less," said Salado, who revealed that within the "ambitious" project they also want to reintroduce seaweed into the area.
During the meeting, "infinite" possibilities were discussed for the Senda Azul project, for which the Diputación has set aside 20 million euros. However, Salado complained about the excessive bureaucracy involved in setting up any project related to the coast, pointing out the objections constantly raised by technicians from both the national government and the Junta.
But Salado highlighted that despite the complications, his team is “totally determined to move them forward”. He added, "It is not a party political issue, it is something we want to promote with the collaboration and involvement of all the administrations and civil society, we want to promote awareness of the sea and its protection.”
Regarding the jetty, the mayor said, "Since it is not possible to build a marina, the only one planned is Torrox-Nerja, we want to go for these structures, which we understand do not modify the dynamics of the coastline."
He went on to say, "We have identified three areas where action should be taken, in Los Rubios, in front of the Elimar hotel and in the Totalán stream, in front of Los Marines, and for the moment the government only looks favourably on Los Rubios, where we are already building a wall to protect the coastal path.”
Salado concluded, “We have to do it, because we live off tourism and the beaches are our main attraction.”