Local officials in Chloraka are stoked about tourism potential following a deal to install breakwater structures, but a coastal engineer is raising safety concerns for the project in Paphos’ western town that has been occupying the headlines recently over refugee management.
Local media on Friday said a Greek construction company landed a €4 million contract with the Cypriot government after bidding on a breakwater project to spruce up the beach line between Saint George and Laura hotels in Chloraka.
A total of five breakwater structures, some 70 meters long each including spaces for docking, will be constructed based on the plan for the Chloraka coastline. The project is expected to competed in two years by KEPA Attikis, which also has other contracts with government including the construction of desalination plants.
Transport Minister Yiannis Karousos, who was in attendance in a signing ceremony on Friday, said the project was part of public works announced previously by President Nicos Anastasiades, saying it had been expedited as a priority for Paphos district.
Loizidou said that the area was known for undercurrents, adding the project would take an intolerable toll on the environment and endanger public safety
But a coastal engineer is warning against the project, citing safety concerns and fears over drowning incidents.
Environmental consultant Xenia Loizidou wrote on Facebook over the weekend that she had just seen posts about the project and had questions over the “upgrade” of the Chloraka coastline.
“I don’t know what sort of study was done and how it got approved. This is the first time I see this and I’m truly scared, I’m speechless,” she said.
Loizidou went on to explain that the area was known for undercurrents, adding the project would take an intolerable toll on the environment and endanger public safety.
“We will be counting drowning incidents one by one,” Loizidou said, while also calling on authorities to reconsider the plan that that she described as going against Europe’s Green Deal.
But Chloraka leader Nicholas Liasides is happy with the project, saying efforts in the past ten years had been geared towards upgrading the local tourism product.
Liasides has also been calling for the relocation of hundreds of Syrian refugees who reside in a controversial studio complex in Chloraka, calling on them to move out of the area due to concerns over the quality of water supplied to the property.
But the property owners say orders to shut down the apartments are unlawful, arguing that water cuts to the property were racially motivated. He also called on Liasides to appoint lawyers on the case in order to resolve the issue in a court of law.