I just received an update of the Las Lajas situation. The last post I did related to Las Lajas was last October and can be seen here.
I understand that this current update was sent out to property owners in that area.
You may have heard the rumors that have been circulating that MOP and or the Municipio of San Felix had moved in and were constructing a newer, larger seawall intended to stabilize the area near the Rio San Felix and halt the progress of erosion on Playa Las Lajas.
Well, part of the rumor is true: a new, expanded seawall located at the site of the original wall has been completed. This expansion curves to the west and has two small jetties extending a short distance to the east. And while MOP did grant the permit and provided design criteria for the seawall and ANAM did grant permission, neither they or the Municipio have participated in the construction nor have they contributed financially. This expansion has been privately financed. The decision to move ahead without government assistance was made in early January and speed was necessary as the window of opportunity for the work to be completed was small – the dry months between January and March. With our private contractor, a meeting was held with Ing. Luis Lombardo of MOP to re-open the lines of communication. Several more meetings took place over the course of 5 weeks: with the senior MOP hydrologist from Panama City (flying in at our expense), with ANAM (the environmental agency) and the Governor of Chiriqui. At the end of February, we were advised that the permit had been issued.
Work began on Monday, March 5th and started on a sad note with the demolition of what remained of the Palmquist home. Between the continued erosion damage and damage caused by salvagers & vandals, the structure had become extremely dangerous. The wreckage now forms part of the new seawall. We’d like to take this opportunity to thank the Palmquists for allowing access through their property and their prayers & good wishes for a successful outcome.
Ultimately, 175 loads of boulders were trucked in and placed. Additionally, 25-30 loads of gravel were brought in to stabilize the road. The total cost of this venture was $32,000. In the short time since completion of the expansion, there have been some changes noted but its still early days yet – we’ll continue to monitor the site and send out updates.
As always, thanks Don Ray for your interest and continued support.
Thanks for the update Linda. I have had several emails from people that have asked what was happening there. Now they will have a better idea.