Yes, Virginia, you can make it to Golfito depósito

One of the commercial centers taking a big hit from the early November storm is the Depósito Libre Comercial de Golfito. That’s where Central Valley residents go to get cut-rate tires, alcohol and kitchen appliances.

The big rock that dropped onto the Interamericana Norte did so just a few yards from the bailey bridge installed over a washout at Cambronero. Highway officials say the route will be closed at least until Friday because there are at least six more big boulders threatening the road from above. The Autopista del Sol is an alternate route as is Ruta 3 through Monte de Aguacate. The rock fell Monday and became the latest in what is turning out to be a long-running series of disasters involving the national highway net. The Interamericana Sur remains closed at Kilometer 248 between Palmar Norte and Paso Real. Other smaller routes remain closed as a result of the four days of rain during the first days of the month. Photo: Paul Ogier

The Golfito commercial center was designed to provide financial activity to the area after banana operations ceased. Purchases can be made free of taxes by persons who stay overnight nearby. But the perception is that Golfito in southwest Costa Rica cannot be reached by Central Valley residents, and this is the big Christmas shopping season.

The Ministerio de Obras Públicas y Transportes said that those wishing to visit Golfito can do so via the Interamericana Sur to Pérez Zeledón then detour to Dominical and pick up the Costanera Sur, the Pacific coast road.

The usual route via the Interamericana Sur is closed at Palmar Norte due to massive landslides.
The ministry also noted that the trip will take longer because of other problems en route. For example, the Cerro de la Muerte has restrictions that may add travel time.

The Costanera Sur suffered a washout in early November, but the route was repaired even as other roads were jolted out of service by slides through Nov. 5.

The Costanera Sur still has some problems but traffic is getting through. There also are cleanup operations on both the Costanera and the Interamericana that might mean more delays.

The situation in Golfito is just a snapshot of the damage to commerce all over the country from the four days of unusual rain brought by Tropical Storm Tomas.

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