There really are plans for overpass elevators, ministry reports

A $1.3 million deal is in the works to install elevators at three pedestrian bridges in the metro area.

The first is on the Autopista General Cañas facing Hospital México. This was the subject of a news article Tuesday in a Spanish-language newspaper.

The Ministerio de Obras Públicas y Transporte responded almost immediately with a press release.

The ministry said that elevators also would be installed under the same contract on the Autopista Florencio del Castillo at  San Diego de La Unión and on the Circunvalación at Barrio Quesada Durán.

The elevators primarily are for the disabled who cannot mount the steps of the pedestrian overpasses. Some, like the pedestrian bridge at La Sabana at the park by the same name, have ramps that permit disabled access.

The ministry expressed dismay that the minister, Pedro Luis Castro Fernández,, was cast in a bad light when the new article said he was being reprimanded by the Sala IV constitutional court for not installing the elevators.

The contract, awarded to Casa Confort S.A. has a requirement for completing in 90 days. However, the contract still must be approved by the Contraloría General de la República, the budget watchdog.

The ministry pointed out that the original Sala IV decision was in 2009 and that there have been a handful of ministers since then. The court action was against a ministry agency, the Consejo Nacional de Vialidad.

Castro was quoted saying that he did not know about any recent action against him by the Sala IV until he read the newspaper.

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