Benidorm approves the tender for the new urban furniture and bicycle loan contracts

Both contracts include technological and sustainability criteria, in line with the DTI Master Plan
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Benidorm approves the tender for the new urban furniture and bicycle loan contracts.
Benidorm approves the tender for the new urban furniture and bicycle loan contracts.

The plenary session of Benidorm City Council today has approved by majority the bidding documents and tender of the new contract for the installation, maintenance and commercial exploitation of urban furniture that "will promote the installation and maintenance of technological elements" that will allow the city to comply with stipulated in the Master Plan for the Smart Tourist Destination (DTI), in the Sustainable Urban Mobility Plan (PMUS), and in the Sustainable Energy Action Plan (PAES); as well as advancing in the implementation of the ‘Benidorm, Smart and Sustainable Tourist Destination’ project.

The Councilor for Public Space, José Ramón González de Zárate, has assured that this is a "very ambitious" contract and that it will mean "a very important leap in quality for Benidorm in terms of new technologies and in terms of image and modernization".

After thanking the work of the municipal technicians, De Zárate has detailed that this contract “is going to be tendered for a period of 10 years and that it provides for an investment of at least 1.5 million euros that the winning company must carry out that investment during the first year". In addition, annually the City Council will receive a fixed fee of at least 150,000 euros, and an annual amount intended for investments for the exploitation of commercial elements from 131,000 euros.

Apart from the installation, conservation and maintenance of the current furniture, including the labeling of streets, canopies or muppies, the new contract also includes the exploitation, content management and conservation of "unique elements" already implemented or process of implementation of a marked technological nature such as 'technohito', 'technoparadas', digital totems, environmental sensors, weather stations, Wifi access points, vehicle recharging points and telescopes.

Unanimously, the regulation for the deposit, custody and return of lost objects was initially approved, with which "the aim is to improve the provision of the service to citizens and clarify the administrative procedures in this type of procedure", as explained by the Security Councilor Citizen, Lorenzo Martínez. Before reaching the plenary session, the document has been submitted to public consultation through the municipal website, which has allowed it to "collect information from citizens and organizations potentially affected by the future regulation."

Martínez has indicated that “the Treasury technicians, from the General Secretariat, the municipal Data Protection delegate, as well as the Lost Property Section, attached to the Local Police, and to the Department of Citizen Security have participated in the drafting of the regulation , which is in charge of the management of lost objects ”.

After today's approval, the Regulation will be submitted to public information for a period of 30 days. At the end of this term, possible allegations will be resolved and the text will be approved definitively.

Opposition motions

During the session, a motion was made by the socialist municipal group that proposed the elaboration of a youth strategic plan after the COVID-19 crisis. After stating that the City Council has been working on a 'Young Plan' since the beginning of the year, the government has presented a replacement amendment, to urge the Valencian Government to “urgently promote a shock plan for the creation of youth employment to alleviate the consequences derived from the COVID-19 crisis, making it possible for young people in Benidorm and the Valencian Community to access the world of work ”. The aforementioned plan must include the modalities of training, employment and entrepreneurship, and be managed through LABORA.

The amendment defended by the deputy spokesperson for the local government, Mónica Gómez, and approved by the majority, proposes that this shock plan be financed with the resources of the non-reimbursable Fund that the Generalitat will receive from the Government of Spain within the reconstruction plan of the autonomous communities.

Urgency motions

By way of urgency, a motion by the councilor of the Water Cycle, José Ramón González de Zárate, has been approved with the vote of the entire Corporation, to give the green light to the draft cooperation agreement between the City Council and the Public Sanitation Entity de Aguas Residuales (EPSAR) to finance the operating costs of the Benidorm treatment plant. The agreement includes requesting EPSAR to report on the status of the processing of the adaptation works of the drives and pumping stations of Benidorm and l’Alfàs del Pi, pending since 2017.

During the debate, De Zárate criticized the Valencian Government for "its lack of investment in the facilities of the Benidorm treatment plant," which also provides services to the municipalities of l'Alfàs del Pi and La Nucía. According to the figures transferred by the mayor, "in the last five years the citizens of Benidorm have delivered more than 10 million to EPSAR without receiving any investment that reverts to the city's treatment plant." Meanwhile, "Benidorm does invest in the treatment plant." In fact, the last management contract provided for "more than 4 million euros of investment for improvements to be made by the concessionaire in 4 years". However, "practically we have had to make all this investment for a year and a half due to the lack of investment by the Generalitat."

By majority, a motion by the councilor for Public Space has passed to approve the contract for the bicycle management and loan service, which for the first time will include the implementation of electric bicycles. De Zárate recalled that to date this service was included in the urban furniture contract.

The mayor explained that "when drafting the contract specifications, the new conception of the city around the bicycle has been taken into account, seeking to promote its use as a sustainable means of transport. For this, and once we have a network of more than 90 kilometers of bike lanes, bicycle lanes and cycle paths, it is essential to facilitate its use by all segments of the population, both residents and visitors of any age, and hence it will require that in addition to mechanical bicycles the service includes the possibility of using electric ”. In fact, the goal is to reach 9,000 subscriptions.

In addition to sustainability criteria, the document has also paid special attention to investment in new technologies, in accordance with the Sustainable Energy Action Plan (SEAP), the Sustainable Urban Mobility Plan (PMUS) and the Plan Director Benidorm DTI.

The mayor has assured that "it is a demanding and ambitious contract with which we intend to have the best service and the most beneficial for the general interest of the city, both from the point of view of sustainability and economic". Thus, companies with experience in managing this service will be required in cities with more than 70,000 inhabitants and with at least 200 bicycles. That is the number of mechanical bicycles that the service must have in Benidorm, to which at least 50 electric bicycles will be added.