News Local Plans for environmental centre, footpath at Larnaca salt lake

Plans for environmental centre, footpath at Larnaca salt lake

There are plans to set up an environmental centre and to extend a small footpath to allow the public to walk around Larnaca salt lake, Phileleftheros reported on Tuesday.

Currently there is a small footpath at the southern edge of the lake.

Larnaca mayor Andreas Vyras told the newspaper that the plan is for an 11 km footpath, along the entire lake. This project will be combined with the construction of embankments and fencing to prevent a repetition of previous incidents when people have driven onto the salt lake in the summer.

Vyras said the salt lake project was discussed with Agriculture Minister Costas Kadis at a recent meeting where it was agreed that plans should be ready by September when follow-up discussions will be held to schedule the work.

The September meeting will also discuss the proposal of the Environment Service and the Forestry Department to set up an environmental centre in the salt lake area, similar to the Environmental Information and Education Centre at Cape Greco.

Initial plans for such a centre had been scrapped in 2013 because of the financial crisis. The minister has instructed government services to seek funding through EU environmental financing programmes.

The plan includes audio-visual equipment for a 3D ‘tour’ of the salt lake, a small conference centre, a museum and a recreation area.

The mayor said that Kadis had told the meeting that the government wants to move forward as quickly as possible on the project so as to enhance the salt lake’s value as an important natural habitat in the EU.

Larnaca is a member of an EU network of cities close to salt lakes with important wetlands.

But even though the town’s salt lakes welcome thousands of visitors a year, there are few facilities.

 

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