Mérida, Yucatán — Although gradually, the rail yards that will become part of a grand park are finally being cleared, a rare tangible sign of progress at La Plancha.
Inicia la limpieza de La Plancha pic.twitter.com/yFZ7PqIyk6
— Milenio Novedades (@MilenioYucatan) January 31, 2018
Tons of abandoned cars and hulking metal parts are haphazardly strewn across acres of 25 hectares north of the historic train station.
After years of planning and negotiation, the state announced a green light for Gran Parque La Plancha late last year.
A reporter from Milenio Novedades found tons of railway ties, rotting locomotives and rail cars. Workers used torches to cut up the debris into manageable pieces.
Removing scrap metal is more difficult than hauling away intact rail cars, a worker told the reporter while hacking up the axles of abandoned railway wheels.
Clearing the parcel will take up to three months, laying the groundwork for planting, renovation and construction for the park under an elaborate master plan.
The disused rail cars and locomotives are in a former Railway Operations Center maneuvering yard called vía muerte, indicating a graveyard for trains.