• Associations in favor of pacifying the road oppose the agreement reached to return part of the traffic, as claimed by another part of the neighborhood and the trade after the problems of coexistence

It seemed that the urban and social conflict over the round of Sant Antoni he had written his final episodes. But this Monday it has become clear that the future redevelopment of this road that connects Sant Antoni del Raval It has become a trench that confronts neighborhood, social and merchant entities from the neighborhoods. The defenders of pacifying it and leaving vehicle traffic to a minimum have held an act in the middle of the round to make their positions known, while the detractors have attacked with a statement insisting that traffic (of buses and bicycles) be returned to the street is the best tool to stop the “degradation and problems of coexistence” that they attribute to the intensive and pedestrian use of the area.

It should be remembered that the debate has already been going on for several decades, even before the provisional market of Sant Antoni moved to this artery. Then the idea of ​​pacifying it was already being toyed with, although it seemed difficult to fit in with the mobility of the area. But when he market returned to its original locationl (completed its reform) four years ago, the raised slab that supported it was maintained and a pulse began that still has no end. The paralysis was due to doubts about the definitive redevelopment and to avoid double spending on it.

what was a political pulse This year he has added two defeats to Ada Colau’s match. First, when the opposition parties and the government partner (PSC) in the Barcelona City Council prevailed in the February plenary session on the mayor’s plans, with the aim of promoting the urgent removal of the slab, scheduled for the end of this anus. And then when last April a proposal from the group of Cs prospered, urging the Colau government to respect its own commitment on the urbanization project supposedly agreed in 2018.

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No agreement between affected

However, the soap opera of the round still has many chapters to write, given that the deputy mayor for Urban Planning, Janet Sanz, already advanced weeks ago that she intended to update the project. The result presented to the different entities There have been two proposals, one for total pacification on a single platform, but without a slab, and another that only leaves a two-way bike lane and only one bus lane in a descending direction (with the option from Sepúlveda or from Villarroel). The councilor has suspended a meeting that was supposed to bring together all the dissenting voices today.

ANDl party in favor of pacification had made little of his voice heard until now, but the Association of Veïns de Sant Antoni, Fem Sant Antoni and Xarxa Veïnal del Raval They coincide in championing pacification now, in tune with Barcelona en Comú and together with several dozen entities that bring together, above all, educational centers. Pep Sala, president of the former, assures this newspaper that to show their conciliatory will they would accept the proposal of “semi-pedestrianization” with one lane, since it would at least allow a large extension of the sidewalk on the Raval side, which would allow greater civic use .

In the press conference organized in the round at the request of the other two entities, their respective spokespersons, Xavier Caballé and Carmela Turró, have read a manifesto where they also demand measures to face “existing social problems” in the area without diverting them to others neighborhood points. They have highlighted that “the discourse that links vulnerability with insecurity and dirt must be cut off”, and announced that the Sunday, May 29, they call on the neighbors to “occupy the round” to claim it as a space of cohesion between the two neighborhoods.

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Among those attending the event was, for example, the former councilor of Ciutat Vella, Gala Pin, which the opposing side attributes to the growing “politicization” of the conflict, which promises to sharpen ahead of the next municipal elections. The flank that rejects pacification is based on the problems of coexistence denounced in recent years, due to saturation of uses of the space, bottles and insecurity, they denounce. They also bring together several dozen entities led by the Platform of veins and veins affected by the llosa de Sant Antoni, among which the large merchant associations of both neighborhoods and other neighborhood groups stand out.

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This sector of those affected asks that the 2018 project be executed with two bus lanes (one in each direction) and two directions for bicycles, as well as a “reasonable” dimension of sidewalks but that does not favor the presence of the so-called ‘market of the misery’. They do accept an update that improve loading and unloading planning or the organization of garbage collection.

His spokesman, Francisco Villena, recalls the hundreds of police complaints generated in the area in recent years, especially in the summer, which led to several neighborhood mobilizations and the massive collection of signatures of support. The neighbors filmed the conflicts and made a public complaint that caused the installation of police officers continuously in the area.

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