Cycling is set to get more popular after the news of the massive increases in metro & bus fares in the city, they are to set to increase by an average of 11% with the 10 journey ticket rising by 29% to 12€ It was the big trending topic on twitter as people used hash tag #tarifazo to vent their anger. It also emerged that the consumer representative on the transport board also voted in favour of the increase, leading to calls for his head on a plate from Madrid´s consumer groups.
Mayoress goes to Moncloa
As Rajoy continued his round of meetings with regional & city leaders so it came to pass that Mrs Botella our city Mayor took her turn. As ever she played to form taking the opportunity to do , well ,nothing for the City. Did she make a special plea for the City´s unemployed , the poor or take an opportunity to demand more money for our public transport. No. According to her the biggest problem we have is , pollution? No. Gridlocked roads? No. Increasing waiting lists for surgery in our hospitals? No. The biggest problem ´we´ have she told the PM, is the need to pay the City´s private contractors their invoices. Keeps me awake at night.
Numbers don´t add up
The man behind EuroVegas, Sheldon Anderson announced last week that he will personally visit Madrid at the beginning of May to meet with regional PM Aguirre. He is expected to travel to Alcorcón which is looking to be the favorite venue to build the massive gambling project. As the announcement of the ´winner´ (Madrid or Barcelona) draws closer it seems the claims being made in relation to jobs and investment that the project will bring are unraveling. Initially for example Anderson´s company were brandishing numbers like 164,000 direct jobs and 97,000 indirect ones . However the Catalan Economy ministry has poured cold water on this figures , with its own estimate being between 15,000 y 20,000 direct posts. This seems much more realistic given that the Company Vegas Sands employs a total of 34,000 people throughout its complexes in USA, China and Singapore.
The Elephant Man
As his highness recovers in a Madrid private hospital he must be reflecting that whilst his grandson literally shot himself in the foot, (things that children do according to the Queen. Well I don´t know about your childhood but shot guns and hunting did n´t figure big time in mine) the King has done so metaphorically. Going a on an Elephant hunt at a cost of 30,000€ in the African jungle on the anniversary of the founding of the Spanish Republic and in the midst of the greatest recession in modern times , is just so , well , idiotic , it defies description. He is also the Spanish president of the World Wild Life Fund . I googled the section in the job description “speed up the extinction process by shooting to death big game¨ but nothing came up. Oh and by the way if you never see another issue of Madrid Watch perhaps I´m rotting in jail. Criticism of the King is still a penal offence in this country.
Flamenco in the Park
The New York Times reported on the new Flamenco performances in Retiro Park . Flamenco and Food , can be experienced from now until the summer at the Florida Park Theatre inside Retiro. You can watch outstanding Flamenco whilst eating dinner in the open air. Details http://intransit.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/04/13/flamenco-and-food-in-madrids-retiro-park/
Ian Hassell @ianhass
Ian is a Director and co-founder of http://englishwarehouse.com/ Madrid´s social network in English. All views are his own as englishwarehouse is a warehouse and does n´t have any.