The popularity of Cabo San Lucas as a premier international travel destination has not come without more than a couple of challenges. One such challenge is the amount of vehicle traffic on popular tourist roadways and the resulting traffic headaches, which can lead to some real traffic snarls for locals and visitors alike.
In fact, the most recent Population and Housing Census for the Los Cabos region counted nearly 60,500 cars in the region, with more than 25,000 in Cabo San Lucas alone.
Much of this growth in vehicle count has come at a time when the airport is expecting eight million passengers this year, with more future additional Los Angeles flights taking place just this week from Minneapolis-based Sun Country Airlines.
The City Takes Action
The Los Cabos City Council recently took action, submitting a plan to the Mexican Federal Secretariat of Infrastructure, Communications and Transportation (SICT) outlining a number of transportation projects that will not only allow Cabo San Lucas to reduce the traffic headaches that visitors complain about, but also to plan for extra roadway capacity well into the future.
Mayor Oscar Leggs Castro has already committed that the SICT and the local government will work together to administer the funding to ensure the project deliverables are completed.
The two main executive projects submitted for funding by the SICT include the Fonatur roundabout at the entrance to Cabo San Lucas along with an important roadway connection between the toll bypass with the Transpeninsular Highway at Cerro Colorado.
Improvements to the Fonatur Traffic Circle
The work project planned for the Fonatur roundabout will be targeting the overall traffic flow and circulation at the popular tourist traffic circle. The two-lane road leading to the traffic circle in both directions is a source of traffic headaches for both local and tourist traffic.
According to Mayor Leggs Castro, the focus of the road project will be to eliminate the bottlenecks at the intersection that have resulted from years of more than 12 percent tourist traffic growth in Cabo San Lucas.
Transpeninsular Highway Improvements
The other project will focus on the connection between the toll bypass and the Transpeninsular Highway at the Cerro Colorado junction. The hope is that the second project will help to reduce some of the traffic on Federal Highway, making for an easier commute for visitors in the area.
The popular toll bypass runs well north of Los Cabos near the airport, connecting Highway 19 at El Mangle with Highway 10 near San José del Cabo.
The municipal government and SICT also inked an agreement on January 31 to further work on improvements to the overall maintenance and infrastructure of the highway.
A major upgrade favored by tourists will be the potential creation of brand-new “retornos” on the highway. Retornos allow for vehicles to avoid oncoming traffic jams by enabling crossing to the other side of the road to travel in the opposite direction. Plans are to complete a traffic study around the possibility of retornos every kilometer along the route for future construction.
According to the mayor, the upgrades to the roadway and additional traffic studies will seek to eliminate the headaches now surfacing regularly on the roadway, especially when an accident occurs.
Next Steps in The Process
No timeline has been provided for the start of the projects, but with the constant growth Los Cabos sees, works will likely begin soon to keep up with growing demand. According to Mayor Leggs Castro, the SICT has already authorized and fast-tracked the executive projects, and the municipality has been given the go-ahead to secure the needed resources to advance the projects.
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