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“Exclusive: Controversy Surrounding Campeche’s Light Rail!”

San Francisco de Campeche, a semi-compact city with a concentric and radial layout, spans an urban area of 3500 hectares. Like many Latin American cities, it has experienced erratic growth, with irregular settlements sporadically cropping up.

The Maya Train, a significant infrastructure project, could have been an urban catalyst for Campeche. Initially, the plan was for the train to traverse the city from south to northeast, utilizing the existing railway track and constructing the terminal at the site of the old train station. However, this plan was discarded due to social pressures from residents living along the proposed route. Despite the railway in Campeche having been disused for almost a decade, and offers of better housing in nearby urban enclaves, the proposal was ultimately rejected.

Instead, the city's peripheral arc was chosen as the main route, with the new Mayan Train station located at the edge of the city's urban growth. This decision was made in accordance with the Municipal Program of Urban Development of Campeche. While this new station is operational, it remains largely disconnected from the city.

Recently, an initiative was proposed to utilize part of the existing railway track for a light rail system. This system would serve a dual purpose: connecting the Maya Train station with the city and the historic center, and providing a modern public transport alternative.

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However, several crucial aspects were overlooked in the process. Public scrutiny and consultation, essential for evaluating proposals of this magnitude, were not adequately conducted. The impact on Avenida Pedro Sáinz de Baranda, the beloved public recreational center of Campeche, was not considered. This area is not only the best place to enjoy the sea view, but it's also a hub for the city's population. Adults, children, teenagers, tourists, runners, cyclists, athletes, and women who enjoy their zumba and aerobics classes all converge here daily. The impact of the light rail on this cherished public space is a significant concern.