Every electoral program includes in its master plan the idea of taking back La Rambla for the Barcelonians, deluding the people with false promises!
There is no electoral program, right or left-handed, or city government that does not include in its master plan the idea of “taking back La Rambla for the Barcelonians.” With so many empty promises and phrases devoid of meaning this topic certainly deserves discussion at the podium. Let´s stop with the stories, and with deluding the people with false promises: Barcelona is a tourist city, and tourists will continue walking along La Rambla just as they visit the Museu del Barca or wait in line at the Sagrada Familia.
Who among the wise is able to find the formula that challenges the laws of the market and changes from one day to another a city of tourist apartments, souvenir shops and fast food bars into a city of local businesses and social housing? I do not know. But does this mean that La Rambla is a hopeless case and not worth devoting efforts to improving it? No way. There are things the City Council can do because it has the tools for it. For example, it makes no sense for the revised dogma of all the initiatives of the previous governments to stay paralyzed for months as a reform project, long-debated and agreed to by all parties.
It is avoidable also that pickpockets should run free. And of course, it is embarrassing that the inability to find solutions for people who are engaged in the illegal sale of counterfeit goods give way to an absolute permissiveness with the “top blanket,” another of those activities that encourage locals to avoid this street whenever they can.
Really they want to “recover the Rambla for Barcelona?” No need to be so ambitious, but at least try to put some order.
Source: Ramon Sune, La Vanguardia
Photo Credit: Xavier Cervera