Growing Responsibly with our Community
“In the future our main concern will no longer be can we travel to every place on earth. Our main interest will be that it is worthwhile arriving there.” (Herman Lons, 1908)
The Spokesman-Review, Spokane, WA, February 19, 2006
“Playa Las Tortugas has become an example of what can be accomplished when the government, environmentalists, and private developers look beyond a quick fix and the quick buck that plague developing areas around the world ...”
Commencing in 1997 the developer of Playa Las Tortugas sponsored an environmental study, performed by the Scientific Investigations Department of the University of Nayarit, which was used to draft a document published in March 1998 called the “Ordenamiento Ecologico Semidetallado de la Cuenca Baja del Rio Otates, Nayarit”.
The study is a tool now used to forward environmental conservation and protection, currently helping us to promote protection of the adjacent mangrove estuary and turtle nesting habitat at a federal level.
Urban Development Plan
The environmental study mentioned above also served as the base document of an urban development plan for our zone, sponsored by the developer of Playa Las Tortugas. By sponsoring an urban plan we were able to encourage lower density development of the surrounding area. The plan was signed into law, and later published in the state legal periodical during April 2005. The urban plan regulates development for over 5 kilometers (3 miles) of coastline and the adjacent 1783 hectares (4582 acres) of habitats.
Included as part of the urban plan study were demographics of the area including the two rural, primarily agricultural towns of “El Espino” and “Otates y Cantarranas” which form our community.
According to the results of the study the population had been in decline over the previous 15 years, by a total of some 17%, due to migration in search of jobs. At that time only about 29% of the total population was economically active, primarily in agriculture, livestock, and fishing.
In 2007 an agricultural or ranching field hand makes approximately $150 pesos per day, or less than $14 USD, making alternatives such as seeking work outside of Mexico more attractive. According to the 1990 census only 62% of persons above the age of 15 years were educated to the primary level, and even today it is not unusual that adults in our community remain without basic reading and writing skills. One of the means of raising standards of living is via education, another by creation of jobs, and the two go hand-in-hand.
Standard of Living and Educational Opportunities
In addition to responsible growth, Playa Las Tortugas looks forward to seeing a raised standard of living by providing employment and education opportunities to inhabitants of our rural area.