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One year in, taking stock of scheme to count and cap vehicles on Formentera

Foto balanc formentera.ecoConsell de Formentera president Alejandra Ferrer and mobility councillor Rafael González seized the opportunity of Sustainable Mobility Week to discuss an official progress report on the first phase—from the start of July to the end of August—of a system to regulate the number of vehicles brought onto the island.

President Ferrer retraced the path to Formentera's becoming an island where mobility is increasingly sustainable. Concerning this summer's rollout, Ferrer declared, “we met two of our main goals: no surprises or hitches, and a total vehicle count in tune with last summer's figure, breaking with our previous upward trend”.

The president stressed that the participation of islanders and businesses had been key to making the experience a success. “Today we're that much closer to the sustainable island every one of us aspires to”, she said. “During this period of reflection, we'll be meeting with stakeholders in our island's social and business spheres”, she added, explaining that the “Consell d'Entitats will prepare and vote on guidelines to be followed next season”.

Formentera.eco
For his part, Councillor González pointed out that an average of 20,595 vehicles were on the road in July and August. “We saw our lowest figure—17,834 vehicles with authorisation to be on the road—on the first of July”, González said. The high came 10 August, when the total was 21,929. Stacking up this year's maximum estimated total against the same figure in summer 2018, there was a two per-cent drop.

The councillor also highlighted €59,512 in total returns from a levy on incoming vehicles, pointing out that tourists paid a per-diem rate of €1 to drive cars and €0.50 to drive scooters. Nineteen tickets for violations of the new rules were issued as well; they are currently being processed.

Keeping tabs on vehicle traffic
Sharing data from tallies conducted in the first half of August, González held out an 8% drop in the average number of cars on local highways. Data from Balearic Port Authority (APB) indicate the amount of incoming and outgoing vehicle traffic rose by 1.9% in July and August, which the councillor accounted for by pointing out that “in summer 2018 we saw year-on-year growth of 13%, so we're looking at a slowdown in the acceleration of vehicles entering and exiting Formentera via the port”.

Public transport
In the peak period of August, tallies of riders getting on and off public transport reflected a 7.6% uptick compared to 2018. Averaging for July and August, the upswing was 1.6%.

Cycling
More good news came from manual tallies of cyclists on the network of nature trails, or rutes verdes, which revealed a 28% increase in bicycle use compared to 2017 data (records weren't kept in 2018). “The goal is to implement the Sustainable Mobility Plan, which lawmakers passed in 2018, and to make Formentera ever more sustainable”, said González. “There's still more work to be done.”


19 September 2019
Department of Communication
Consell de Formentera

Dance, theatre, music, performances and circus form core of L'Illa a Escena 2019, act two

foto 2019 illa a escena 1The Department of Culture of the Consell de Formentera unveiled today the second round this year of the musical and performing arts programme “L'Illa a Escena”. Culture and education councillor Susana Labrador said that the nine projects scheduled to stop in at the Sala de Cultura “have something for both children and adults, and is designed to spice up the local cultural scene”. “We're bringing acts from across the spectrum of artistic expression and styles”, said the councillor, “so islanders can enjoy a cultural programme that's eclectic and plural”.

September
Things get started with Espai_F's Pàries, directed by Miquel Costa. The short production tackles the scars marring human relations now that the modern idea of community is officially dead. Two shows will take place on Saturday 28 September; the first at 7.00pm and the second at 9.00pm.

October
The month starts off with a dance production from Fils Roulants. Fortaleza a la Napolitana was not only created by dancer Valeria Del Vecchio; she features in it as well. It deals with duality—of a woman who, in life, wears strength like a mask, and of the fragility that ultimately shows us there are no missions to accomplish. The production starts at 8.30pm on Saturday (5 October) and Monday (7 Oct). Reservations required.

Also in October, the Collective Signatures Festival celebrates its third year with the performance-centred Arcipelago. There is a video art marathon at the Sala de Cultura (Cinema) on Thursday 17 October from 4.00pm to 10.00pm. Then on Friday, the festival's special guests star in a closing opera performance at jardí de ses Eres, from 7.30pm to 10.00pm. Collective Signatures starts on Wednesday the 16th and includes a programme of performances in a number of locations across the island.

Youngsters will really have a ball with Jon Braun, a puppet show highlighting the strength that is instilled by love in the face of misfortune. A family-friendly western with masterfully crafted aesthetics and no shortage of emotion, Jon Braun was Titeremurcia's family-favourite in 2018. The show starts at 6.00pm, Saturday 26 October, at the Sala de Cultura (Cinema).

November
The month of November kicks off with choreographer and dancer Helena Lizari's Maleable. The show is a coproduction of Mercat de les Flors and the El més petit de tots festival. Geared towards children aged 0 to 5, the imagination-fuelling dance performance is a voyage of sensations and for the senses; an exploration of textures and touch; and a perceptional adventure. Maleable opens at 6.00pm, Saturday 9 November, in the Sala de Cultura (Cinema).

La Güasa's Mobil circus act is another one for the kids. Through a mix of fragility, imbalance and tension, the show traces the story of a humble man out to share his final grand creation. Built almost entirely out of recycled objects, the complex apparatus is chock full of wide-ranging widgets that will have the audience wondering what's next.

Mobil has garnered a host of accolades, among them FETEN 2014's award for best direction and ACA's awards for best individual production and best set design. The show starts at 6.00pm, Saturday 23 November, at the Sala de Cultura (Cinema).

Back at Sala de Cultura (Cinema) on Friday 29 November, Aires Formenterencs celebrate thirty years making music by unveiling a new album. The concert starts at 8.30pm and features Miquel Brunet, Eduard Riera and Pep Lluís Garcia.

Then, at the same time on Saturday 30 November, the Sala de Cultura will host the final round of the Salvador Ibarra poetry contest known as Art Jove. The event is presented by the AELC with help from Institut Balear de la Joventut (Balearic Youth Institute) and Agència Catalana de la Joventut (Catalan Youth Agency).

December
Closing out the second semester of L'Illa a Escena is Minorcan troupe Melicotó Titelles' all-ages production, Plastiiik. The show conceived as a way to educate theatregoers about the importance of caring for our natural environment. The show starts at 6.00pm, Saturday 28 December, at the Sala de Cultura (Cinema).

Cost of admission
Tickets for children's productions are priced at €5 (adults get in free). Admission to Espai_F's Pàries costs €12, and Fortaleza a la Napolitana, €7. The video and performance art marathon and Arcipelago are both free, as well as the Aires Formenterencs concert and the final round of Art Jove.

Cultivating culture
L'Illa a Escena promotes the performing arts with help from the Institut d'Estudis Balearics, and works to foster partnerships between professional dance, theatre and circus troupes, enrich the cultural scene, and ensure access to culture, with help from the Spanish culture ministry's Platea programme.


19 September 2019
Department of Communication
Consell de Formentera

This Saturday, Formentera celebrates World Cleanup Day at Estany des Peix

cartel-world-cleanup-day-1The Department of Environment of the Consell de Formentera reports that the local celebration of World Cleanup Day promoted by Plastic-Free Formentera and Qué Celeste with support from the Consell happens this Saturday, 21 September.

Volunteers for a cleanup of Estany des Peix will meet at 10.00am at the Nautical Sports Centre (Centre d'Esports Nàutics). Besides getting information on recycling at two educational stands, participants will get the low-down on the day's agenda before splitting off into teams of 10 to 15 and heading to nearby locations like Lago Dorado, ses Bassetes and stretches of coastline by the harbour and in Can Marroig and la Savina. Formentera Divers will join in too, combing the water—both the surface and further down—for debris.

The effort has the support of the Department of Environment, which collaborated on logistics, event planning and permits. The Consell additionally coordinates disposal of found objects, bags and other waste.

Call for local participants

All those interested should contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . That group and Qué Celeste have called on islanders to “become part of a massive movement and help shape consciousness around the environmental impacts of our waste management crisis”.

World Cleanup Day began in 2008 in Estonia when fifty thousand people cleaned the country in just five hours. The model has since traveled the globe, becoming one of the fastest-growing popular movements ever.

18 September 2019
Department of Communication
Consell de Formentera

Formentera sets sights on off-season tourists

foto promo turisme 2019 1The Department of Tourism of the Consell de Formentera reports that the coming days will see the island's promotors hitting two travel expos in Switzerland and Netherlands, and a birdwatching festival in the Delta de l'Ebre.

Head of promotion Carlos Bernús is in the Swiss city of Montreux at the TTW Romandie (Travel Trade Workshop) today and tomorrow—“one of the biggest for tourism professionals in French-speaking Switzerland”, Bernús said.

“We'll be wooing off-season travellers with details of our island's impressive ecological values”, Bernús said. Formentera has its own stand at the event.

Utrecht, Netherlands
From 17 to 22 September, Formentera will also participate in the city of Utrecht's 50 Plus, an expo for the 50-and-older set, who, Bernús pointed out, “are O.K. with missing the high-season months...and want to take their time”. Bernús said the island's ideal profile had “mid- to high-range purchasing power, and is tuned in to the environment”.

Birdwatching tourism
Formentera will also court the national market at the Delta Birding Festival. The event runs from today until Friday, 20 September, at MónNatura Delta. The tourism chief described the group of islands in southern Delta de l'Ebre as “the perfect venue to trumpet Formentera's qualities as a birdwatchers' destination”.

Visit from Toronto
Formentera will also get a visit this week from representatives of Toronto-based press outlets specialising in cultural travel. The group will tour cultural and heritage sites like the Ca Na Costa megalithic monument and dig sites in es Cap de Barbaria.


18 September 2019
Department of Communication
Consell de Formentera

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