Posts Tagged ‘Cinta Costera’
During the last three decades Panama City has changed dramatically. It is almost a totally new city changing every day before our very eyes. We have the most modern and highest buildings in Central America. Many of our visitors say that Panama City is the Miami of the Americas and this is true.
Our highways are also being repaired and others are brand new. Such is the case of the Cinta Costera or Coastal Strip in English. The first phase of this important coastal highway was built by the Martin Torrijos Administration. The project was inaugurated on Sunday, June 28, 2009. The coastal high speed highway was so successful that Ricardo Martinelli decided to build a second and third phase. The second phase is finished and the Ministry of Public Works is presently working on the third phase which should be finished sometime next year.
The third phase consists of a marine viaduct and landfill bordering on the area of San Felipe, also known as Casco Viejo or Old Shell. The project also includes, besides the road interconnection, three other components: a pedestrian walkway on Avenida Pablo Arosemena and two landfills—one in front of the Presidency and another next to the Avenida de los Poetas, to be used for parks and parking, which together account for 10.6 hectares of new space taken from the sea. (See diagram above).
The marine viaduct will have a length of 2.8 kilometers and it covers an area of 6.68 hectares, including a link on the first phase of the coastal strip. It will be 200 meters from the wall of the Casco Viejo (Old Town or Old Shell).
Inspired by the “Aterro do Flamengo” in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, the coastal strip features large green areas, trees and tropical plants and flowers to adorn the beautifully landscaped gardens. Bordering the bay from Punta Paitilla to Casco Viejo and providing an enjoyable contrast of the modern city on one end, with the colonial buildings surrounding the oldest part of town on the other end.
I went to the Coastal Strip specially to take photographs of the modern installations to share them with you at Lingua Franca. I was there Sunday—at daybreak—in an effort to enjoy the morning light, perfect to take good pictures. These are the gardens located near the Casco Viejo, the oldest and historic part of Panama City.
Opened in June 2009, the coastal strip extends along Balboa Avenue, one of the most important roads in Panama City, with six lanes for traffic, three in each direction to ease the smooth flow of vehicles, and there are two viaducts and several places to make a U-turn.
It is an ideal place for recreation in full harmony between nature and the growing metropolis of the capital, designed to provide a healthy distraction in a beautified environment.
If you are tired of blinding blizzards, rough hurricanes, sleek ice, gray skies and below freezing temperatures, come on down to Panama, and enjoy the pleasures of friendly people, white-sand beaches, and year-long springlike temperatures. Good Day.
Additional Reading: The Green Strip Bordering the Panama Bay – Lingua Franca
The Terraplén was once one of the busiest places in town. It was the entrance to the public market where you could find almost anything you wanted, specially food from the countryside. If you bought fish, several persons at the Terraplén would shave the scales away and remove the guts. It was a beehive full of noise, merchandise movements, crowded bars, housewives buying food or sailors getting ready to sail away to Darien. In a nutshell, the Terraplén was a place of excitement.
Now the Terraplén is gone. Only the memories remain. The construction of the Cinta Costera got rid of the place. If our grandfathers, who must be playing on a moving white cloud would return to Earth and visit El Terraplén, they would think they landed on another country. The entire area looks totally different. When I went there about a month ago, I couldn’t believe my eyes. The change was incredible.
Below are several pictures of how the area looks now. Compare it to the Terraplén of your memories and you will see the dramatic difference. Yep, Panama is changing very fast as it races to join the countries of the First Word. Here we go.
If sight-seeing, architecture, and traveling is your cup of tea, please come again tomorrow for more exiting pictures of this amazing place in the middle of the world called Panama. I’ll be waiting for you right here at Lingua Franca. Good Day.
Without hesitating one iota, I would say that the Casco Viejo is the soul of Panama City. It’s where the country was born. It’s here where the Presidency of the Republic is located and where the official ceremonies of the nation are carried out. This is where the Metropolitan Cathedral displays its solemn structure. Casco Viejo and the Republic of Panama are one. When you walk through the narrow streets covered with red bricks, you can feel History resonating inside the walls of its old buildings. This is where “the walls come down and the soul comes into view.”
Below are several scenes of Casco Viejo which reminds us of how it was when our country was young, vigorous and full of hope for a better future. We’ve come a long way, but there’s still much to be done. Here we go.
This famous street is located at 12th Street East between Avenida B y Avenida Norte. A charismatic man called, don José López, who was deeply loved in this section of the city was called “El Ñopo” which means white man with blonde hair—fulo.
Posted in Miscellaneous, tagged Cinta Costera, Coastal Strip, Crime Prevention, Law Enforcement, Panama, Police Department, Security, Tourism, Trucks, Urban Development on February 8, 2011 | Leave a Comment »
Soon after the inauguration of the Cinta Costera during the administration of then President Martín Torrijos, the government of Panama discovered the project had become an immense success. People gathered at this hot spot in swarms in an effort to breathe fresh air and exercise their bodies. It was exactly what the city dwellers had waited for decades.
To protect the goose that laid the golden egg, the Ministry of Public Works requested the Police Department to designate a special force to protect the area against potential crimes. Many tourists feared visiting the area during the evenings thinking they could be mugged by thugs. To avoid this from happening, the Police Department flexed its muscle and organized a special unit to take care of the Coastal Strip. To this day, it’s one of the safest areas in Panama City.
While the duathlon was in progress, I took a couple of shots of some of the resources the Panama Police has allocated to the Coastal Strip to prevent potential criminal incidents. When I saw it, the movie Universal Soldier starring French actor, Claude Van Damme, came to my mind. The police truck certainly looked intimidating. Take a look.
This is the final post on the series of the Cinta Costera or Coastal Strip in English. I’m currently preparing a new series of photographs on the renovation of the old shell of the city commonly known as Casco Viejo.
I hope you have enjoyed viewing the pictures of the new face of Panama City which is rapidly transforming into a modern cosmopolitan city in Latin America. Good Day.
The first and third leg of a duathlon is running as fast as you can, as if you’re trying to catch the wind. The third running leg is the final part of the competition. The first one crossing the finish line, gets the golden medal—the only one that really counts for an athlete.
Yesterday I posted several pictures of athletes riding their bicycles. Today the images are about the competitors running as swift as a gust of wind. All the friends and relatives were rooting for their loved ones as they approached the finish line; it was a very emotional scene.
This is what came out of my Birthday camera. Here we go.