Airport upgrades planned for late 2024; Molleturo highway restoration complete; Election news; Option offered for bus travelers; New visas of ‘exceptions’

Jul 18, 2023 | 13 comments

Lunes, 17/7/2023

Hola, Todos –

Titular –

Vía Molleturo registra otros puntos críticos (Other critical points on the road to Molleturo) – El pasado jueves, the vía Cuenca-Molleturo was opened at km. 49 with 2 lanes and 10 terraces on the 150 m. slope above the road, each with a drainage ditch. The slope is protected with a metal mesh and geo-membrane to control water filtration, prevent erosion, and avoid new slides. At the bottom, next to the road there is a 48 m. long retaining wall to catch material loosened by rain or wind from the hill above. The temporary bypass has been closed to traffic.

Upgrades to Cuenca’s Mariscal La Mar airport have been scheduled for the second half of 2024. (El Mercurio)

The 119 km. vía Cuenca-Molleturo is most vulnerable to the impact of El Niño and authorities are planning on cleaning the road from the frequent rock falls and micro slides. Due to its geography the road is a constant challenge and the arrival of El Niño makes the risk urgent, especially at 12 critical points identified by MTOP. Cristian Vera, who drives the road frequently, said it is like a montaña rusa (roller coaster) in which you play with your life by travelling along it. <That sounds more like Russion roulette. Will that 2 ton rock fall on my car as I’m driving by?>

Other stretches requiring intervention are at km. 76, 86, 92, & 94. The business sector is also worried about this road which connects two productive provinces and is vital to the supply of both primary materials and finished products

Elecciónes –

Revisión de planes (Review of plans) – All citizens have the opportunity to review the work plans from the 8 pairs of presidential and vice-presidential candidates. You should do this before voting on el 20/8 and el 15/10 if there is a run-off. Go to https://www.cne.gob.ec/planes-de-trabajo. You can download the documents in PDF format for free. <How many of you vote, anyway?>

Consultas electorales (Electoral consultations) – You have 3 ways to find out your polling place. You can call 02-3815-841 from 8:30-19:00, 7 days a week. You can go to https.//app02.cne.gob.ec/consultaregistroelectoral/ and find out using your cédula number. The 3d option is to find the CNE APP mobile app which you can download from the operating systems of iOS and Andoid.

Cédulas caducadas (Expired cédulas) – If your cédula has expired you can no longer use it for public and private paperwork, but you can still use to it vote el 20/8. The Registro Civil is ready to extend hours for cédula issues and you can get an appointment at https://www.registrocivil.gob.ec/turno (or turnos, since the address ended at “.ec/tur-” and the next line didn’t print.)

Cuenca –

La parada sur será en la plataforma de Narancay (South stop will be at the Narancay platform) – The government responded to Saturday’s closure of the southern access to Cuenca by local merchants who want the return of an informal bus stop that was on the Panamericana Sur. Tires and wood were burned on the roadway to call attention to the issue. The city will have a new control point for interprovincial, cantonal, and parrochial buses at the Narancay platform for buses coming from the Terminal Terrestre starting el 24/7. <Somehow, I don’t think this will solve the traffic congestion problems for people coming into Cuenca from the south, especially after a weekend out of town.>

De El Mercurio del viernes, 14/7 (1 article):
Pista del aeropuerto se reparará en 2024 (Airport runway to be repaired in 2024) – The repairs to the Marisal Lamar Airport runway are planned for the 3d quarter of 2024. Initially planned for this year, runway repairs are the most urgent and costly of the changes needed so that the airport can offer cross border and international flights. The cost will be over $8 million, and take 90 days, although it is hoped that the contractor will be able to reduced that to 65 days. At the same time, the roads will need to be in good shape.

Besides the runway work, there will need to be changes so that the airport can get an international certification. For this, 2 jetways donated by the Guayaquil airport will need to be installed for boarding from the 2nd floor with arrivals using the 1st floor. The cost of these changes is estimated at $2 million. Other changes will include implementing booths for migration, customs, anti-narcotics and other basic aspects which will be done this year. This will allow international flights currently using Quito.

Demand is evidenced by the increased frequency of flights from Cuenca to NY with a stop in Quito. The first cross border flights will be to the north of Perú – Chiclayo and Piura connecting to Lima with its connections to the world. Other flights would be to Bogotá and Panamá. Besides the cross border flights, there will be new airlines. Aeroregional has offered to operate in Cuenca since agosto. This will be known in the next few weeks. The expectation is that costs of flights will be reduced. According to CORPAC, which administers the airport, the number of passengers has increased. The numbers of passengers from 2019 to 2013 (sic – 2023?) is summarized below.

Nacional –

De El Mercurio del viernes, 14/7 (1 article):
Rige la entrega de visas a ciudadanos extranjeros (Visa issuance to foreign citizens is in force) – The Government made an announcement about the submission of requests for the Visa de Residencia Temporal de Excepción (VIRTE) connected to the 2nd phase of regularizing visas for foreigners. This phase is for non-Venezuelan foreigners who entered Ecuador through regular immigration control points up to el 16/9/2022, but are now in an irregular migration situation. <“Illegal aliens” to use the term used in the US. You know who you are, and I hope you don’t think it’s OK for you to skip jumping through all the hoops since you’re gringos and Ecuador should be happy to have you here whatever your migration status is.>

And that’s all for today so hasta ? –

Jeanne
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Editor’s note: Jeanne’s Periodico is a translated digest of news from the Cuenca daily newspaper El Mercurio. If details, such as event dates and times, do not appear in the translation, they did not appear in the newspaper (please don’t ask her for them). The text between the carrots, or guillemets (< … >), is Jeanne’s personal opinion and not part of the news translation.

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