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Areas Urbanism & territory, Tourism and Economic activities Mobility

Formentera counts vehicles on highways

imatge-carretera-de-la-mola fo1The Consell de Formentera Mobility Department reports that, from 1 to 12 August, a surveying firm specialised in automated and manual vehicle tallies has been charged with studying how islanders get around the island (walking, cycling, public transport, personal vehicles) and how they are using parking areas.

The effort—one part of the local Sustainable Mobility Strategy—is the second such survey and tally in two years, and will be employed, said department head Rafael González, “to assess this summer's pioneer regulation scheme”.

Data on vehicle ingress and exit will be available when the period of regulation (July and August) concludes. According to González, those figures will be used, along with findings from the current research, “to asses how things have gone this season, and lay the groundwork for the one ahead”.

“So far”, said González, “we know the total number of vehicles on Formentera roads in July 2019 has remained below the same figure from 2018”. He pointed out that, on average, 19,183 cars were cleared to be driven on the island during the first half of the month, compared to 19,880 during the second.

In the final two weeks of July, clearance was extended to 1,428 tourists who brought a personal vehicle with them; to 8,851 tourists who rented a vehicle on the island; to 8,048 Formentera residents and to 1,553 owners of second homes on Formentera, local businesses, freight companies and others.

Quad-free roads
González also said his department would request a report from island law enforcement confirming the absence on local roads of quads. (New regulations prohibit drivers from renting them locally or bringing them onto the island.) Formentera Local Police recently issued a statement that no quads were observed during the seven days before 22 July. González held it up as proof that car hire companies are complying with the new rules, and hailed their efforts.

Complete the quick and easy request for clearance to operate a vehicle during the remainder of August at www.formentera.eco.


6 August 2019
Communication Department
Consell de Formentera

Two weeks in, Consell takes stock of scheme to regulate vehicles on island

imatge-carretera-de-la-mola foThe CiF Mobility department wishes to report that there were 19,183 cars and motor scooters authorised for operation on local roads in July. The figure is an average, and accounts for tourists and island residents both, not to mention vehicles with special exemptions.

In July, 7,720 local drivers were given the go-ahead to use their cars. Similar accreditation went to 2,594 rental cars and 6,257 rental scooters. All three represent the average number of vehicles over the two weeks since the programme—the first of its kind in Spain—launched.

First permits run out
Starting with visitors who brought their compact car from Eivissa during the first two weekends of the month, motorists have already maxed out July quotas in each category. Additional applications from Eivissa drivers hoping to bring a vehicle to Formentera were processed under the more general visitors' category.

Eivissa residents also reached the limit on scooters during the first half of the month. Administration officials discovered some of those applicants had jobs on the island—a fact entitling them to authorisation in a different category. “These drivers were processed in the right category, once again leaving space for scooter riders from Eivissa”, explained mobility councillor Rafael González.

The councillor pointed out that ferry companies continue to collaborate in the measure by serving as an information source for visiting tourists. “This means that visitors are already familiar with the measure when they arrive—ticking the box on one of our top priorities in the programme's maiden year”. González seized the chance to remind islanders that they too must get permission to drive on Formentera in July and August, and that certification can be requested easily on www.formentera.eco.

The councillor said that a device at the entry/exit point on carrer Almadrava will continue to take readings of all incoming vehicle plate numbers. Though the priority this year is building awareness about the regulation scheme, legislation establishes a system of fines of between €1,000 and €10,000. Tourists who bring compact cars pay €1/day and €0.50/ day for scooters.

Authorised vehicles during the first half of July (average)

Cars (visiting drivers) 657
Scooters (visiting drivers) 97
Cars (Mallorca and Menorca residents) 91
Scooters (Mallorca and Menorca residents) 27
Electric vehicles (visiting drivers) 44
Hybrid vehicles (visiting drivers) 21
Cars (Eivissa residents) 211
Scooters (Eivissa residents) 20
Vehicles (Formentera residents) 7720
Vehicles (drivers with second residence on Formentera) 413
Vehicles (Eivissa residents employed on Formentera) 60
Vehicles (drivers with reduced mobility) 32
Vehicles (local businesses) 379
Vehicles (freight) 359
Official and public service vehicles 40
Vehicles for public good 124
Industrial machinery 32
Classic or historical vehicles 5
Rental cars 2,594
Rental bikes 6,257

Total 19,183

18 July, 2019
Communication department
Consell de Formentera

Formentera begins regulating vehicle entry

inici-regulacio-formenteraIn a press conference held today, the Formentera Council's president and councillor of mobility, Alejandra Ferrer and Rafael González, announced details about a system to regulate how motorists bring vehicles to the island—plus how they drive and park once they are here—which will be in place from 1 July to 31 August.

Marking the launch of a programme which is the first of its kind in Spain, President Ferrer called it “a historic day”. “Our future and sustainability are inextricably intwined”, she said, “so we've taken this bold step to make the island sustainable financially, environmentally and socially, too”.

Ferrer reminded islanders of the twists and turns that have occurred since 2014, when residents asked authorities to regulate vehicle entry on the island as a way to reduce congestion on roads during the central months of summer. Legislation for Formentera's environmental and economic sustainability passed on 29 January, laying the groundwork for the Formentera Council to take the reins on capping the vehicles being driven on local roads in summer.

1 July is the first day of “regulated entry”. Companies that transport vehicles to Formentera collaborate by reminding motorists that special permission will now be required to drive. According to Councillor González, passengers will also be informed that “if they haven't gotten it yet, space is still available and authorisation can be requested on formentera.eco during the trip from Eivissa to Formentera”. Several weeks back, ferry companies began announcing on their websites that special accreditation would be required to operate a vehicle on the island in July and August.

The summer driving permit is free for all residents of the Balearic islands. Non-resident tourists must pay €1/day to operate a car and €0.50/day for scooters. Fines for motorists caught driving without the permit range from €1,000 to €10,000, though Councillor González said the priority now would be to educate drivers, and that fines would only be issued as a last resort. A camera installed at the only point of vehicle ingress and exit on the island—at carrer Almadrava in la Savina—will automatically check entering vehicles' plate number against the master list of authorised vehicles, and unauthorised vehicles will trigger an alert.

The mobility councillor pointed out that, on average, roughly twenty thousand vehicles—cars or scooters—can be on the road on any given day of the implementation period. Last summer, the total number of vehicles on the island peaked at twenty-two thousand. González explained that authorities used last year's maximum to set this summer's cap, ensuring that “for the first time ever, Formentera is on track to buck the trend of ever-increasing vehicles on our roads”.

The initiative will be reappraised before next summer to see to it necessary upgrades are performed and, in the words of González, to “make sure we hit our sustainability mark—to be a place that tourists want to visit and where we islanders want to live, now and in the years ahead”.

Educational campaign

The Formentera Council is also behind an information push that includes handing out six thousand pamphlets across ticket counters at the Eivissa and Formentera ferry docks and tourist information points. The outreach initiative's architects have put together a video for distribution on CiF social media accounts and viewing on ferry journeys. Translated in Catalan, Castilian Spanish, English and Italian, the initiative is aimed at reviewing the measure and linking it with the goal of local sustainability.

Complete details on the regulating scheme are also available on the formentera.eco reservation portal.

1 July 2019
Office of Communication
Formentera Council

Motorists to find out from today if July and August driving requests get green light

The Formentera Council mobility department reports that from today (31 May), motorists who have visited formentera.eco to seek authorisation to enter, drive and park on the island in July and August will begin receiving confirmation if their reservations are accepted.

Since its 15 April launch, the formentera.eco reservations portal has received 3,796 requests—1,936 by tourists, 823 by Formentera locals and 204 by residents of Eivissa.

Payment
Next week will come with the rollout of a payment portal where visitors from outside the Balearics who are subject to a daily fee of one euro to use their cars (or €0.50/day for scooters) can complete the process in a single step. The site can be accessed and credit card payment processed as soon as a petition has been made specifying the days one plans to visit.

Formentera residents are exempt from the fee, as are Eivissa residents and motorists in the rest of the Balearics. Authorisation will be automatic and the online application unnecessary for vehicles belonging to Formentera residents which have already been cleared for blue zone parking.

Rental cars
From next week car hire companies on the island will be notified by phone with the user name and password required for registration. Businesses must visit formentera.eco and click on the empreses de lloguer (car hire companies) section in the condicions especials (special conditions) part of the website. A plate number will be required to finalise the permit to operate a vehicle on local roads in July and August.

Acting mobility councillor Rafael González held up 2019 as year zero of the pathbreaking anti-congestion and conservation-forward programme in Spain. “It's also about giving tourists what they want: a calm, tranquil island where they can enjoy their holidays”.


31 May 2019
Office of Communication
Formentera Council

Outreach aims to bring tourists on board with 'blue zone' parking

foto-oficina-informacio---turi1The Formentera Council's mobility department is continuing in its push to bring drivers up to speed on the system of metred parking—estacionament regulat—that has been implemented across Formentera's largest towns in recent years.

“January was all about getting islanders on board with the setup”, said department councillor Rafael González, “now we're back with a retooled message for our visitors”, pointing out that the challenge this time was to address some of visiting motorists' blind spots concerning the new system.

Brochures
After an initial unveiling in Catalan and Castilian, pamphlets—plus a website reviewing the ins and outs of the scheme—have been translated for English- and Italian- speaking tourists. Apart from clearing the air on the most common questions, the brochure goes over the mechanics of the system and the hours of enforcement.

Parking attendants and guides at tourist information points will target tourists and rental car outfits with the roughly 2,200 freshly printed brochures—half in Catalan/Castilian and half in English/Italian.

“The real final objective is for car hire companies and tourist information liaisons to send our visitors to www.zonablava.com”, said González, describing it as a dedicated site where drivers can find all the information and get “a straightforward explanation of how Formentera's metred parking system works”.

15 minutes for local business
A pillar of the new system is the recently unveiled 15-minute parking spaces implemented in blue zone areas in Sant Francesc and Sant Ferran. The spaces are free and open to everyone; drivers request a ticket that entitles them to 15 minutes of parking.

González pointed out that the 15-minute spaces are located in strategic points around towns, and said they grew out of a suggestion from local business owners about practical ways to ease congestion and give shoppers a way to get in and out quickly: “15 minutes to get your shopping done, and we're making getting to local businesses easier”.


May 24, 2019
Àrea de Comunicació
Formentera Council

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Find us at:
c. d'Eivissa cant. Arx. Lluis Salvador
07860 Sant Francesc
tel. 971 32 10 87 · fax 971 32 10 63
mobilitat@conselldeformentera.cat

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