TULUM, Mexico – The neighborhood of Aldea Zama, known for its beautiful design and lively vibe, is facing a serious issue that hits its core identity. As evening falls, a shocking 99% of its streetlights aren’t working. This lack of light turns the lively night into an unsettling quiet, unlike Tulum’s usually vibrant nightlife.
The problem isn’t just about looks; it’s about safety. Dark streets are a danger to those out after sunset, making simple walks or bike rides without a flashlight risky. Local businesses are suffering too, as the dark streets discourage people from venturing out, impacting the local economy negatively. Alarmingly, the darkness has made Aldea Zama a target for burglaries. Over the last four months, at least five break-ins were reported. The fear is that worse incidents are bound to happen.
The concerns go beyond safety, highlighting a growing disconnect between local authorities and the ground reality. Despite higher water and electrical bills and an additional 6% tax on rental income demand from villa owners, basic services like street lighting and consistent water supply remain unaddressed. Recent attempts by authorities to shut down villas and seek extra funds, without improving essential services, have triggered a crisis.
The streetlight issue has negative consequences for Aldea Zama. Even simple tasks like walking to a nearby store or enjoying an evening stroll have become intimidating. Both residents and visitors now depend on flashlights or phone torches to navigate. The sense of insecurity is palpable.
Moreover, the darkness has made Aldea Zama a hotbed for criminal activity. Dark, isolated streets are ideal for misdeeds. The reported break-ins, targeting homes, highlight the urgency of the situation.
Residents and business owners in Aldea Zama are at a turning point. The widening gap between their expectations and the daily reality is causing anxiety and worry. Despite the rising financial demands through increased bills and additional charges, local authorities have failed to deliver the needed services.
It’s crucial to note that Aldea Zama’s residents and business owners aren’t alone in this fight. Many others in Tulum are facing similar issues. A collective effort is required to push the authorities to act swiftly. This includes ensuring basic services like street lighting and a steady water supply are promptly provided, bringing back a sense of safety, and normalcy to this unique neighborhood.