The incredible improvements.
Most of you don’t live here or travel here often. You may not be aware that we have had many infrastructure upgrades. Many of them were on the list for years and years and others were completely unexpected. All of the recent upgrades have made Playa Negra and the nearby areas so much more interesting whether you are considering a purchase for investment, retirement, or vacation usage.
Believe it or not over two years ago the road that connects Paraiso to Pinilla had a major change (see photo). Many of you may remember that old ugly road. In the dry season it was full of potholes and in the wet season you may have found yourself stuck in that old familiar flip-flop stealing mud! Area residents, in conjunction with the local municipality, made the first step. Together we installed culverts in all the creek beds. The second step was installing bridges over the largest creeks. The four critical bridges that we installed were in Paraiso, one in Playa Negra, one in Avellanas, and the last just outside of San Jose de Pinilla. Even though these measures helped us out immensely we still were in need of a real road with an improved surface.
This is where we received some grant monies provided by a generous German bank. The new road surface, albeit not quite what North Americans are accustomed, was an incredible improvement. Fifteen inches of rock base were added to the entire 21 kilometers of coastal road. The greatest effect of this small combination of infrastructure was that there would no longer be problems getting into or leaving the area at any time of year, no more springs of water in the middle of the road during the rainiest times of year, and no more flip-flop stealing mud!
The next major improvement was the paving of the road that connects Paraiso to Veinte Siete de Abril. This newly paved road is one of the best in the country. The road has an 8’ wide segregated bike path for its’ entire length. It has colored reflectors throughout. It changed our journey from Playa Negra to Santa Cruz from a grueling 1 ¼ hour ride to a pleasant 30 minute ride.
Naturally, there are other very important improvements to mention. The Tempisque bridge has given us the availability to cut Liberia out of our route when going to San Jose. The next most important upgrade is the Puntarenas/San Jose highway. This new highway took years and years to complete. It cuts out the old section of highway that would go through the mountains in San Ramon to reach the central valley.
Each one of these integral projects has made an enormous impact on our way of life here. Our car suspensions are lasting longer. Gas mileage has increased. Our travel times have decreased considerably. In the old days it may have taken up to 6 hours to reach Playa Negra from San Jose. Now, we can arrive here in nearly half that time. With the road improvements we can get to Playa Negra from the Liberia airport in just over an hour.
The future looks brighter than ever now. The government has approved the paving of the road from Villareal to Veinte Siete de Abril. This project is already starting with the renovation of the Santa Cruz/Veinte Siete road. Furthermore, President Laura Chinchilla promised the owner of Hacienda Pinilla to put a hard surface on our coastal road. This will be the icing on the cake for us. Here at Playa Negra Realty we believe that once this last section is paved the values of all the properties will increase immensely and, consequently, our lifestyle will be bettered.