La Guardia a car free zone

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NO PARKING: In an effort to make things easier for locals and visitors.

AS the first wave of summer visitors appeared in La Guardia, Salobreña, on Sunday (June 19) the talk of the town was a new parking ban due to kick in over the next week or so.

The measure, which Local Police officers on patrol are warning drivers of, will be in place until September 15 and is to strictly forbid parking anywhere in La Guardia except for two waste grounds at the entrance to the district and on Plaza de la Guardia.

Those who ignore this measure (and the yellow lines which have been in place on the narrow streets, but mostly ignored, for years) face fines of between €90 and €140, the officers are explaining.

The news has mostly been well received by the 50 or so year-round residents, who have for years been complaining of the chaos which descends in July and August as the population multiplies by four and weekend visitors also drive down and insist on trying to leave their cars as close to the beach as they possibly can.

However some shopkeepers are not so sure. “If our customers don’t mind carrying their shopping back to the car then it’s fine, but if they go elsewhere because of it we won’t be so happy,” said Inma, a cashier at the supermarket.

Councillor for Caleta-La Guardia Gabriel Jeronimo said at a meeting with residents to explain the measure: “Everyone wants to park right by the beach, in the shade, and that just isn’t possible.

We’re not just banning parking for the sake of it, we’re trying to make things easier for locals and visitors.” Rosa, who lives in La Guardia all year, said: “if people respect the rule it will be great.”

Altogether there will be about 700 parking spaces available on the waste grounds and the square, however Jeronimo denied a rumour that there would be special permits to allow those who live in the area to continue parking on the streets.

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