Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, Mexico - Last week, Mayor Ramón Guerrero Martínez raised the blue flag on Playa de Palmares, which distinguishes this public beach for its high standards of cleanliness, safety, accessibility, amenities and environmental management, as was determined by the Foundation for Environmental Education's (FEE) international jury of environmentalists.
Located on Puerto Vallarta's Southern shores, Palmares is the first beach in the state that holds this valuable certification, and it has become a role model in Jalisco.
"Today this beach has changed the face of Puerto Vallarta, it has changed our city's history. It is the first Blue Flag beach in the state of Jalisco and this forces us to keep working hard and to redouble our efforts," said the mayor.
He stressed that this achievement is just one of the goals that his government defined to make Puerto Vallarta the most sustainable city in the country with the largest number of certified beaches with public access.
For this purpose, detailed Ramón Guerrero, 25 executive projects for improving access to local beaches were recently presented to the Federal Government's Undersecretary of Tourism, Carlos Joaquin, who expressed his support for the city, recognizing that we are meeting the goal of being a clean and safe destination for both inhabitants and visitors.
"We're going for $50 million pesos to make Puerto Vallarta the city with not only the most accessible beaches, but also the city with the safest beaches," he said.
Of the work done on Palmares Beach, the mayor said it was an achievement to be proud of, "it went from being a forgotten place, a beach that served as a municipal landfill, a dump; to a rescued space, made accessible by ramps and stairs, rest rooms, dressing rooms, drinking fountains, and all of the safety equipment... so today the raising of the Blue Flag is the best way to welcome the 2014 Summer holiday period," he said.
He also acknowledged the efforts of all the different city government departments, whose daily work has made a dream a reality. "Today local families can enjoy a day at this beach, and it is also a bonus for the tourists who visit our city; but now, it is in the hands of our citizens to ensure that Vallarta remains a first class vacation destination."
"This is how our government works, by changing history responsibly; by working together with society, with the citizens who are committed to the destination, with those who are committed to the tourism sector," the Mayor clarified.
The ceremony was attended by PROFEPA's Deputy Inspector of Natural Resources for Jalisco, Gustavo Bonilla Barragán; Ignacio Enrique García Encarnación, representing the Federal Maritime Zone Fund committee (ZOFEMAT); the President of the Puerto Vallarta Hotel Association, Ignacio Cadena Beraud; and Regional Tourism Director, Ludwig Estrada Virgen, among others.Original story translated and edited by Lorena Sonrisas for BanderasNews.com.