The results of the second phase of gathering public opinion regarding the future structure of Avinguda Diagonal were announced yesterday by the councillor for Wellbeing and Territorial Cohesion, Carles Martí (article in Catalan, Avui). In terms of public transport, there was slightly more support for having more frequent buses compared to those who wanted the tram to run all the way down the centre of the important Barcelona road: 80 percent and 75 percent of those who took part, respectively. Seventy percent of those asked showed themselves to be in favour of increasing facilities for bikes on the Diagonal, compared to 15 percent who opposed the idea. Almost 30,000 Barcelona residents took part in the survey and between them they put forward some 212,000 different suggestions. There were also contributions made by 800 school-pupils and 200 companies.
The signs that have become a feature of various buildings in the Raval neighbourhood calling for a better neighbourhood are due to start appearing in Poble Sec (article in Castilian, La Vanguardia). While it has become familiar to see signs saying ‘Volem un barri digne’ (We want a decent neighbourhood) around the Ciutat Vella, especially in the Raval, a group of neighbourhood associations from Poble Sec has decided to join the campaign for better local conditions. They feel that a growth of uncivic behaviour in their area, particularly in the pedestrianised street of Blai, is getting out of hand and causing a fall in the quality of local life. Although they say the problems in Poble Sec are not identical to those in the neighbouring Raval, there are concerns about noise and arguments in the streets until the early hours, people leaving bars who urinate in public areas, and places that are increasingly used by drug dealers. A meeting to be held by an assembly of residents later this week will decide on what action to be taken, which could include, as well as the signs hung from peoples’ balconies, street demonstrations and blockading Avinguda Paral·lel to draw attention to their cause.
In the face of the economic crisis, and a fall in the number of people using taxis in Barcelona, taxi fares won’t rise next year (article in Castilian, La Vanguardia). Taxi companies and drivers have seen their income fall between 18 and 35 percent in Barcelona since the start of the crisis, according to different estimates by various professional taxi associations. This is the first time that taxi rates haven’t increased from one year to the next since 1997, when they were kept the same in the face of a reduced number of licences. The plan has to be formally approved by the Entitat Metropolitana del Transport, which should happen on November 5th—the result will be that prices will then stay the same from November 6th until December 31st, 2010.
Also in the news: Ninot market opens today in temporary marquee while works carried out on original (El Periodico); Generalitat develops plan to restore confidence in local train services (Avui); Women seeks ‘guardian angel’ who approached her on a bus and told her about a possible tumour (La Vanguardia)