Tourism eyed as economic boost for Puriscal

The central government has been asked to help increase tourism to the canton of Puriscal, which is midway between the central canton of San José and the Pacific coast.

Expats already have discovered this area and the access it provides to beaches and the city life. Rentals and home purchases appear to be more reasonable than in some other expat communities.

President Luis Guillermo Solís visited that area Saturday and spoke highly of the possibilities. He toured part of the new national park, La Cangreja, in Santa Rosa de Puriscal. The canton holds two native reserves,  Zapatón and Quitirrisí.

The administrative center of  Santiago de Puriscal also is the location of the Santiago Apóstol church that was heavily damaged in the 1990 earthquake. The church remains fenced but it has been elevated to the status of a national heritage site.

Puriscal already has been the case study of several academic development reports which note that the area has not made a smooth transition from agricultural breadbasket to the present economy.

Solís said that the canton has a high potential for tourism development which locals hope will reactivate the economy and generate jobs.

The president said that the Instituto Nacional de Aprendizaje could offer training for residents who want to find jobs in the tourism industry or in tech positions in the Central Valley.

A tangible effort by the central government will be the improvement of a key highway between Puriscal and Parrita on the Pacific coast.

The president said that he would give instructions to transport officials to maintain continually the highway, Ruta 239. To start with, workers will have to apply more asphalt and take steps to eliminate areas of frequent landslides, officials noted. There also is extensive work needed for drainage.

If the roadway can be kept in repair as an all-weather stretch, the travel time to the Pacific will be reduced considerably, Solís noted.parktour020915

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