Questions From Around Town

A brief Q&A from our readers

From time to time our precious readers reach out to ask us what’s going on around here. As if we’re an information booth. Okay, that’s pretty much  what we are, or like to think we are. Here are some of the questions we’ve received lately with answers to the best of our knowledge.


1. On the shoulder of Highway 19 just past the gas station and the Feliz Viajo sign heading towards Todos Santos, there are many semis and trailers parked alongside the road. What are they doing there?


This area has some trucker dormitories where drivers can pull over and rest. Many of them are  on their way down the peninsula or coming off the ferries.


2. The toll booth on the highway coming out of Cabo and San Jose has reopened for business. As in our money. Why did they stop charging in the first place, and what took so long for them to reopen? The cost has also gone up a few pesos.


The federal government halts charging at toll booths on federal highways following natural disasters. This toll booth stopped charging after Lidia last summer, and remained free of charge for seven months following the storm because a portion of the road was still damaged. Now that the road has been repaired and the storm was last season, the government reopened the toll booths. As far as the price increase, this is routine and due to inflation which is pretty high this year, 3 or 4 or 5 per cent, depending on which government agency speaks which line.


3. On that same toll road, there are three new large and seemingly identical buildings under construction. They’re surrounded by what must be parking lots in deveopment, just short of the Cabo interchange heading to the airport. It sort of looks like a prison. What are they?


Not a prison! These buildings will serve as navy barracks and will will accommodate up to 200 sailors. The Mexican Navy is now in charge of all police forces in Southern Baja; they’re over the city state, and even federal police. Up to now they’ve been living in hotels the downtown merchants’ ass. is paying for.


4. Again, same road. A few weeks ago, it looked like there was a drilling rig on one of the bridges for several weeks. They were on opposite ends of the bridge on different days, and then a little further ahead beyond the bridge. What were they doing?


The sides of the bridge were probably eroding, so workers were filling them with concrete. This was probably thanks to Lidia. In the States, bridges are built with gutters on the sides to divert rainwater, but engineering in Mexico is often a little shaky, and many times cut rate.


5. There are some small, white structures on risers in the arroyo leading past the airport. What do they do?


These are water wells. These wells are bigger than most because they supply water to the city of San Jose.


6. For several weeks, the federales have had cones on the fourlane just before San Jose that slow and even stop traffic on the corridor just past Zippers. The outside lane of traffic is sometimes stopped, and sometimes drivers are seen talking to officers. The traffic backups have typically been brief and don’t seem to affect the other side, but there’s always a police pickup parked there. What’s up with this?


This is a drug checkpoint. They don’t stop everyone, but they’ll likely stop people who don’t have license plates, who have heavily tinted windows, or who look suspicious for any reason. Have you been stopped and questioned? Well, if so, you must be pretty suspicious looking.


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