The ruling political group of Torrevieja, the Partido Popular, intend to table a motion in the next plenary meeting that will see a mass of land near to the municipal cemetery have its classification changed in the Plan General, which will subsequently allow for the extension of the cemetery, originally built in 1898.

The council intend to reclassify the land to enable the extension of land for burial plots, as well as road access and parking, and say that the move should not be the subject on an environmental impact study, as the change in use is not significantly different to the land currently vacant, albeit within a short distance from the protected areas of the Torrevieja lagunas, it is also close to the industrialised areas of the salt mining facility and electrical substation.

The extension will, according to the town hall, allow for burials to be continued “for the next 20 years”, with a capacity for another 1,300 bodies until the year 2025. Around 600 Torrevieja residents die every year, but as the majority of the population is foreign, a lot of those bodies are repatriated to their own home towns.

The 867,480 euro investment reported in August 2011 was set to “ensure space for burials for the next 20 years”, according to the Councillor for Infrastructure, Project and Contracting, Javier Montoro, which should have already secured the future plots until 2031.

The extensive refurbishment program was not without further controversy, as even the new gate meant the removal of one that was protected and listed, without anybody seemingly realising it was of historic significance. Further criticism has been levied on the town hall recently after it was revealed that the cost of using the municipal facility had been increased by the town hall, with opposition groups complaining about the persistent increase of indirect taxes to residents of the town.

Should the plans be approved this time, the good news is that there will be plenty of space for those dying to get into the newly extended cemetery of Torrevieja.

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