1,030 people visited the Maritime Signals exhibition at Portopí Lighthouse in 2020.
The Port Authority of the Balearic Islands (APB) has decided to set aside one lane of the seafront promenade in the Port of Palma for pedestrians and outdoor cafés and restaurants, with the dual purpose of supporting the economic recovery of the hospitality industry and also facilitating social distancing, which is one of the measures adopted by the Spanish Government to alleviate the negative effects caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
As of Monday 25th May, the right-hand lane of the seafront promenade going out of the city, between Calle Monseñor Palmer and Portopí, will be closed to traffic. The extra space gained by closing this lane will be used to give more space to outdoor cafés and restaurants and widen pavements, while vehicle traffic will still have two lanes available.
The operation will be carried out in three stages. The first section, between calle Monseñor Palmer and S'Aigua Dolça, will separate road traffic from the outdoor cafés and restaurants with concrete New Jersey barriers, in order to protect the physical safety of the customers sitting at these establishments. On the second section, between S'Aigua Dolça and Ca'n Barbarà, the space used for parking cars will be moved by one lane. Finally, the right-hand lane of the last section, between Ca'n Barbarà and the Paraires tower, will be used for vehicles to park one behind another, freeing up all the space currently used for parking perpendicular to the kerb.
The work to add the traffic lane closest to the pavement to increase the pedestrian area will be completed in two weeks. In addition to the safety barriers, plastic bollards will be installed and road signs will be changed to mark the new area.
Confluence of interests
The APB has recently received requests from business associations and from restaurants and companies offering night-time entertainment to extend the outdoor areas they use in the APB areas on the Port of Palma's promenade. These requests are aimed at compensating the reduction in outdoor seating capacity imposed to contain the spread of the Covid-19 virus.
On the other hand, closing this lane to traffic is in line with the project that the APB plans to carry out in the next few months to redesign Palma's seafront promenade, which involves providing more pedestrian areas in the port for leisure activities. The project is currently being drafted and is being studied by the City Council's experts.
Finally, extending the port area to gain more pavement space and more room for outdoor cafés and restaurants coincides with the measure promoted by the City Council to open up urban spaces to pedestrians and shops to the detriment of vehicles. These include the road on the sea side of Palma's seafront promenade.