The visitors’ experience in Carara National Park continues to improve; especially for those with disabilities thanks to the recent installation of a modern lavatory system at the entrance of the universal access trail. This upgrading also included the accessibility to potable water every 50 meters all along this trail. All this complemented the initiative called “A Park for All” which consisted of the inauguration of the universal access trail in 2013.
The investment of US$63,300.00 (over 31.6 million Costa Rican colones at the current exchange rate), was the outcome of a public-private partnership between the National System of Conservation Areas (SINAC) and ProParques, receiving a great deal of patronage from the private sector.
Thus, Desarrolladores 506 donated 45% of the financial resources and Valdesol provided the design and supervision of the work. Other donors, listed in alphabetical order were: Acualogica, Constructora Meco, Costa Rica Expediciones, Ferreterias EPA, Holcim, Nativa Resort, Studio Hotel y Teletica Canal 7, as well as Mr. Sal Ayala.
The initiative also benefited from the volunteer work of the staff of Telefonica Movistar, who also committed themselves for the next two years to cooperate with the maintenance tasks in the universal access trail.
“This is a clear example of how public-private partnerships, the strong support of companies truly committed to the environment, which together with one of our main goals, the professionalization of the human resources in the protected areas, can improve the visitors’ experience to our national parks”, noted Steve Aronson, President of ProParques.
For his part, Rafael Gutierrez Rojas, SINAC’s Executive Director, stated: “These works are added to improve the existing ones and to enable all people, regardless of their physical capabilities, to enjoy the national park safely, naturally and independently.” He added: “in this context the SINAC is consistent with the policies of effective inclusion of people with different capabilities into society and, thanks to the support of ProParques and the private sector, the country has now a protected wildlife area for the enjoyment of this population.”