Reconstruction work at the Ordoñez Lasso and Av. Las Americas intersection is 89% complete and, according to the provincial public works office, the project will be delivered ahead of the November deadline.
Ivan Sempértegui, Deputy Minister of Transport and Public Works, said that over-time works shifts on the interchange were the reason for the new schedule. In addition to rerouting traffic on Las Americas under Ordoñez Lasso, the project also includes bicycle lanes and space for Cuenca’s new light rail system, to be built in 2013.
Initially, the project was budgeted for $ 4.3 million but, with the additions, the cost is now estimated to come in at $5 million.
TREE-CUTTING LAW SUIT DELAYS WORK AT PARQUE DE LA MADRE
Cuenca public works officials say that legal action to prevent tree-cutting in Parque de la Madre will delay completion of park reconstruction by at least a month.
A complaint filed in May by Juan Cordova, representing an environmental group, protested the cutting of native trees and plants for the construction of 200-car underground parking facility. Cordova complained of a lack of care in tree uctting as well as a poor public information campaign. His group held a rally last Thursday in Parque Calderon, protesting the tree-cutting.
Project manager Javier Cardenas responded by saying that only old trees were removed during the work on the parking facility. “Only eight of 30 trees in originally in the area were cut down. The rest were tagged and relocated.”
CELL PHONE NUMBERS WILL CHANGE IN SEPTEMBER
Ecuador’s national office of telecommunications reminds cell phone users that an extra “9” will be added to all cell numbers on September 30.
The new digit will be added after the initial zero. In other words, if the current number is 08 942 4424, it will become 098 942 4424. The change is part of the recent order that cell calls between different service providers must have the same per-minute cost.
The change will, no doubt, mean a windfall for business card printers and sign makers.
NEW TOURIST GUARDS TAKING ENGLISH CLASSES
The first group of Cuenca’s new Tourist Guards are taking English lessons as part of their training says Gladys Eljuri, director of the Municipal Tourism Foundation.
According to Eljuri, the guards will provide specialized information for foreign visitors in particular, and will be armed with tourist maps and brochures ad well as batons. The formation of the new group is part of a strategy to promote domestic and foreign tourism in the city. In addition to language training, the guards are also receiving instruction in local history and tourist attractions.
NATIONAL INFLATION RATE IS ON 5% PACE FOR 2012
Consumer prices in Ecuador rose at the fastest pace in four months in July, led by increases in alcohol and food costs, the country’s statistics agency said today.
Prices rose 0.26 percent in the month, while annual inflation accelerated to 5.09 percent from 5 percent, the National Statistics and Census Institute said in a report on its website.
Photo caption: Cuenca's new tourist guards will be assigned to assist foreign tourists.