According to data presented in Brussels this week, Torrevieja City Council estimates that there are over 20,000 potential users for a bus shuttle service between the city and the AVE high speed train network at Villena. The figure is as a result of a study by the government, aimed at proving the profitability of the service. However, despite a previous announcement of its pending launch, even announcing tickets going on sale in time for the FITUR tourism festival, the Mayor of the city, Eduardo Dolón, has now admitted that there is still no final agreement as to when the service might operate, and so there is no specific date for launch. In a more recent statement, the train operator, RENFE, also denied any plans for the service had been made. For their part, Dolón argues that his government will continue to work to try to get it started “as soon as possible”.
Meanwhile, the Los Verdes green party of Torrevieja have criticised renovation plans for the bus station at the Eras de la Sal, as they say that the project does not include toilet facilities. To date, passengers frequently use near-by bars and restaurants, as do a number of drivers prior to their next route of work, which the group feel although is inconvenient so far, it could easily be resolved in the plans to carry out the development. The situation has been a matter of complaint for a number of years, with the Ombudsman even being presented with the complaint. The situation would become unbearable should the train link bus ever become a reality, but the residents and bus drivers state that their complaints have gone unanswered all this time. Meanwhile, the Costa Azul bus company has requested permission for them to place a portaloo at the bus station, so at least their drivers can relieve themselves before embarking on a journey in discomfort, and with potentially dangerous feelings.
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