THE GOVERNMENT has approved the joint development proposals of five councils in the Algarve for the Polis XXI programme, excluding all of the councils in the Barlavento and Baixo Guadiana areas.
The proposal chosen was made jointly by Faro, Loulé, Olhão, São Brás de Alportel and Tavira Câmaras. José Apolinário, President of Faro Câmara and leader of the winning proposal, said: “It’s natural that our proposal was chosen as we have more people and more problems to resolve.”
The Polis XXI programme is a government and EU funding instrument for the redevelopment of historical cities. In Faro, the proposal includes the redevelopment of the historical city centre and the riverside area.
“Although the decision for Faro is not unexpected, the government appears to have an unequal view of the region,” said Manuel da Luz, President of Portimão Câmara who led the Barlavento Sustentável, sustainable Barlavento joint proposal with Albufeira, Lagoa and Lagos Câmaras.
“The purpose of the Polis is redevelopment,” said Manuel da Luz. “Our proposal included renewing the sea fronts, urban areas and better public transport between Câmaras. We are not against the need for Faro to have a Polis programme but the fact that the Barlavento area has been left out.”
The Presidents of Castro Marim, Vila Real de Santo António and Alcoutim Câmaras all said that they were unhappy with the government, which is contradicting itself by not choosing their proposal after defending the fight against desertification.
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