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The opening of the La Linea dual carriageway: a boost for the recovery of tourism in EJ Cafetero and Tolima

U.S.A.The opening of the La Linea dual carriageway: a...

Photograph of the road between the cities of Cajamarca and Calarca in the pass known as La Linea, November 17, 2021, where the task of crossing the Central Cordillera in Cajamarca (Colombia) was given. EFE / Mauricio Dueas Castaneda

The so-called crossing of the Central Cordillera was inaugurated on Monday, 22 November, after building links between the old and new roads to complete the works of one of the most important, delayed and costly infrastructure projects in the country. These include the longest tunnel in Latin America, La Linea (8.65 km long, delivered on September 4, 2020) and the Yarumo Blanco Viaduct (643 m).

Among the tasks associated with the project are Dual carriageway between the municipality of Cajamarca in Tolima and Calarca in Quindio, According to the national government, it represents a mechanism to empower EJ Cafetero and its surrounding area as a new national and international tourist destination.

“This project represents a landmark change for the country’s mobility; With this we positively affected the living conditions of transporters who needed a quick and safe route to improve the flow of exports from the port of Buenaventura, with significant savings in travel time and less congestion, which Represents greater productivity. it also becomes Great tool for promoting tourism development in and around Tolima, Quindio, in particular, where travelers will be able to appreciate the theme park and coffee farm and boost the entire sector of the economy that provides services and supplies to those traveling through this strategic corridor”, highlighted Angela María Orozco Gómez, Minister of Transport.

According to national government estimates, this megaproject will allow the generation of annual resources to reflect:

– Saving 850 hours of road closure time annually.

– Reduction in accident rate.

– Short travel time between Calarcá and Cajamarca (between 30 and 50 minutes for light and heavy vehicles).

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– Increase in vehicle operating speed of the Calarca – Cajamarca corridor, which will go from 15 km/h to 60 km/h in a 30-kilometer dual carriageway.

– Improved mobility thanks to the stabilization of slopes and the construction of walls that will significantly reduce landslides occurring in the area, which avoids road closures and deaths of corridor users.

“When you look at how these types of tasks are distributed, we make great strides towards the sense of development and competitiveness. Thank you because El Tolima is so close to the EJ cafetero. This is the Central Cordillera crossing road of our department. Very important for this”, said Tolima Governor Ricardo Orozco Valero at the opening ceremony of this section.

Similarly, Orozco took advantage of the platform to reveal that, along with their Quindio counterpart, Roberto Jairo Jaramillo, they are moving forward in study and design to modernize. Toche-Salento Tourist Corridor, Which would also mean a connection with the departments of Caldas and Risaralda.

“To continue moving forward we will begin the study and design of the Toche-Salento corridor, which will be associated with this great task and allow us a greater ring of tourism development that opens an important place for Caldas and Risaralda, ” Said departmental head.

Similarly, the Quindian president pointed out that the road horizon of the area does not stop with the distribution of dual carriageways, but other double carriageway-like works will also be developed, as well as the Vise Verdes project, which connects Salento with Armenia, Montenegro and Quimbaya“To generate an environmental and cultural commitment through recovery of old railway stations as well as support to the entertainment and tourism sector,” the government said.

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