Siam Park project expected to go ahead
The Canary Islands Directorate General of Cultural Heritage have commissioned a second report
on the prehispanic remains found by the Cabildo de Gran Canaria (island government) on the site of planned Siam Park Maspalomas theme park. The initiative, which Spanish language daily La Provincia says implies that the Regional Government will assume the costs of the research work, seeks to expedite permits for the construction of the water park promoted by the Grupo Loro Parque.
Miguel Angel Clavijo Redondo, overseeing the directorate, thinks that it will only be a matter of approximately ten days before the Town Council will be able grant the final licenses to channel the ravine, as in his opinion the value of the archaeological deposit is also subject to successive alterations that have occurred over time.
He clearly stated this morning that “the assets can not be perceived as an obstacle.”
The director of the regional cultural heritage service, visited the site with journalists and the Cabildo de Gran Canaria’s own director of Culture, Oswaldo Guerra, along with the mayor of San Bartolomé de Tirajana, Marco Aurelio Perez, to inspect the area where the long planned water park is to be built, stating unequivocally that “the tourism industry can be made compatible with the preservation of Aboriginal [native] culture”.
After analysing the technical field work being carried out at the site, he added “We are not encountering the Painted Cave of Gáldar or the Cenobio de Valerón or El Risco Caído,” all unique, extraordinary and highly valued archeological sites on the island “this is a space that historically was plowed”, referring to the many decades of agricultural use at the site long before tourism.
Clavijo Redondo also indicated that the ceramic and malacological remains (limpets and winkles), in the area of the old stone house known as La Maleza (The Weed), will be collected and taken to the Canarian Museum, with a report and joint publication being made on the subject. He indicated that the stone structures found at the site, still to be excavated, will remain in a green space area within the water park.
Marco Aurelio Pérez, thanked the President of the Canary Islands, Fernando Clavijo, for the help and collaboration that the autonomous government will give the Town Council in searching of a solution to unlocked the initial works on the park, stating for the record that the resolution from the new archaeological study commissioned by the Government of the Canary Islands from the company Arqueocanarias “will allow us to obtain the approval to be able to continue with the processing of the license” for channeling the ravine.
The newly discovered archeological deposit occupies just 2% of the total area of the future theme park, but does coincide with the final section of the required canalisation of the ravine and its junction with the earlier channelling works that were made many years ago so as to avoid the floods that the urban area of El Veril had suffered. “This is what needs to be resolved urgently so that this channel can be executed according to the design that already exists for it,” said the local mayor, who last week had raised the red flag over his administration’s perceived “paralysis” of the project.
The technical meeting revealed that first impressions suggest that the remains found at the site do not seem to be of great importance, although this is still to be determined, everything indicates that their study and cataloging will not hinder or distort the work.
Marco Aurelio Pérez, who said he valued this meeting as “positive action by the administration because it has meant working together to find a solution to a problem,” rejected challenges by the Cabildo president, Antonio Morales, urging the Town Council to grant the license without this latest archaeological study. “It is time to walk with calmness and tranquility, without challenge, and to do things according to administrative procedure” said the mayor.