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Camino Way Markers
Original Camino Way markers made in bronze. Two models, one from Castilla & Leon and the other from Galicia.

PILGRIM ACTION ALERT! Keep Viloria de Rioja on the French Way!

CJ Williams

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Via Turonense (1995)
Camino Francés (1996; 1999; 2001; 2005; 2008; 2011)
Camino Aragonés (2000)
The little village of Viloria de Rioja is in danger of losing the stretch of the Camino that has run along it streets for a thousand years as a result of the latest phase of the expansion of the A-12 Motorway, called the "Motorway of the Camino" in Spanish. The Ministry of Development intends to exclude the small town where, in 1019, Santo Domingo de la Calzada was born. The residents of the village have started a petition to Señora Ana Pastor, Minister of Public Works, to prevent this. There is a link to the petition they have created on the change.org site below. Let's all pitch in to try and stop yet another aggression against the Camino, and to help the residents of Viloria safeguard their village, its history and the memory of Santo Domingo!

La pequeña población burgalesa de Viloria de Rioja está en peligro de perder el tramo del Camino que transcurre por sus calles desde hace mil años por culpa de la nueva expansión de la A-12, la Autovia del Camino. El Ministerio de Fomento pretende excluir a la pequeña población donde, en el año 1019, nació Santo Domingo de la Calzada, santo patrón de peregrinos que construyó un puente, una catedral, un hospital y taló bosques para quienes se dirigían en peregrinación a Santiago. Los vecinos del pueblo han iniciado una petición dirigida a la Señora Ana Pastor, Ministra de Fomento para evitar esto. Hay un "link" a la petición que han creado en change.org abajo. ¡Vamos a echarles una mano a los vecinos de Viloria a salvaguardar su pueblo y su historia, y la memoria de Santo Domingo!

Mantener Viloria de Rioja en el Camino Francés/Keep Viloria de Rioja on the French Way
 
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TerryB

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Norte/Primitivo (April/May) 2009: Norte/Primitivo (parts) (April/May) 2010: Inglés (May) 2011: Primitivo (April/May) 2012: Norte / Camino de La Reina (April/May) 2013: Camino del Mar / Inglés (May/June) 2015
The little village of Viloria de Rioja is in danger of losing the stretch of the Camino that has run along it streets for a thousand years as a result of the latest phase of the expansion of the A-12 Motorway, called the "Motorway of the Camino" in Spanish. The Ministry of Development intends to exclude the small town where, in 1019, Santo Domingo de la Calzada was born. The residents of the village have started a petition to Señora Ana Pastor, Minister of Public Works, to prevent this. There is a link to the petition they have created on the change.org site below. Let's all pitch in to try and stop yet another aggression against the Camino, and to help the residents of Viloria safeguard their village, its history and the memory of Santo Domingo!
Mantener Viloria de Rioja en el Camino Francés/Keep Viloria de Rioja on the French Way

It may be my misunderstanding of the language but is the Camino through the village going to be cut off by the autopista? It reads as though the petition wants the road to run through the village :eek:. I am happy to sign - just want to know what I am signing!!!

Blessings
Tio Tel
 
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I cannot find anything to support construction of A-12 in the vicinity. N-120 is the main carrier of trucks, and the current routing of the Camino avoids it as much as possible. Is it really likely that the foot path would become more involved with the highway? That would certainly reverse the trend.
 

CJ Williams

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Via Turonense (1995)
Camino Francés (1996; 1999; 2001; 2005; 2008; 2011)
Camino Aragonés (2000)
My understanding of the situation is that with the construction of the new motorway, the Camino will be re-routed to run parallel to the old N-120 two-lane highway, thus diverting it away from Viloria, as well as Redecilla del Camino, Castildelgado, Viloria de Rioja, Fresneña, Redecilla del Campo y Villamayor del Río, all of which lie along the route. Land is being expropriated in order to construct the next phase of the motorway, and the Ministry wants to re-direct pilgrim traffic, not only during the phase of construction apparently, but permanently. This would have a tremendous impact on the local economy, as these villages benefit from the services provided to pilgrims passing through, as well as deforming the route by diverting pilgrims away from villages of historical significance associated with the route.

The concerns of the Ministry are, logically, both budgetary and ones of public safety. They undoubtedly want to prevent pilgrims travelling along or crossing the high-speed motorway, and maintaining the route through these villages would require the construction of pedestrian bridges or underpasses (as has been done here in Navarra, for example, upon leaving Cirauqui), and I am sure they are loathe to spend money doing that. However, apart from economic considerations affecting the locals, the Camino is also a World Heritage site and these villages form a part of that heritage. Development is inevitable, but it should be done is such a way that it inflicts as little damage as possible on the toponomy of the pilgrim's route.
 
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CJ Williams

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Via Turonense (1995)
Camino Francés (1996; 1999; 2001; 2005; 2008; 2011)
Camino Aragonés (2000)
I cannot find anything to support construction of A-12 in the vicinity. N-120 is the main carrier of trucks, and the current routing of the Camino avoids it as much as possible. Is it really likely that the foot path would become more involved with the highway? That would certainly reverse the trend.
The N-120 is no longer sufficient. The construction of the A-12 will serve as an economic motor for the region, linking Logroño, Burgos, León etc. via a high-speed motorway. It is a done deal, and the next phase is underway. No one disputes the need for it, nor the benefits of having it. The concern here is altering as little as possible the traditional pilgrim's route and preserving the villages associated with the life of St. Dominic.
 
Camino Way Markers
Original Camino Way markers made in bronze. Two models, one from Castilla & Leon and the other from Galicia.
Peaceable Projects Inc.
Peaceable Projects Inc. is a U.S.-based non-profit group that brings the vast resources of the wide world together with the ongoing needs of the people who live, work, and travel on the Camino de Santiago pilgrim trail network in Spain.

peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
Hi, Navarricano,
I have signed the petition -- any move to take the Camino away from its wanderings through little villages and put it at the side of the N-120 is in my opinion a change in the wrong direction.

But what I didn't see in the description of the opposition was any mention is whether the opponents have a reasonable alternative to the government's plan. Or are you saying that the Camino can just stay exactly where it is and the A-12 can easily go around it? Having a solution makes it harder for the government to stick with its unwise plan, IMO. Buen camino, Laurie
 

Tia Valeria

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Pt Norte/Pmtvo 2010
C. Inglés 2011
C. Primitivo '12
Norte-C. de la Reina '13
C. do Mar-C. Inglés '15
We have always been impressed by the underpasses and footbridges which Spain has, in our experience, provided under or over new road construction. This would seem to be needed here, justified by the World Heritage status of the Camino and this section in particular. Can the petition be made to reflect this? or is it too late to amend it?
Petition signed.
 

TerryB

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Norte/Primitivo (April/May) 2009: Norte/Primitivo (parts) (April/May) 2010: Inglés (May) 2011: Primitivo (April/May) 2012: Norte / Camino de La Reina (April/May) 2013: Camino del Mar / Inglés (May/June) 2015

CJ Williams

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Via Turonense (1995)
Camino Francés (1996; 1999; 2001; 2005; 2008; 2011)
Camino Aragonés (2000)
Falcon, I am not certain where the projected line of this section of the motorway runs. For those who can read Spanish, here is the sole newspaper account I have received thus far:

Viloria de Rioja recurrirá para que la ruta jacobea no se desvié del pueblo

Obviously, being such a small town, it's not like this news is shaking up the big, national dailies. The article is brief and only talks about expropriations of land and the diversion of the Camino to parallel the N-120, bypassing the community of Viloria. It doesn't say exactly where the autovia will be. It appears that Viloria, and possibly Fresñena, will be the villages seriously most affected by the diversion, since the plan is to have the route parallel the N-120.

Nevertheless, the people of the village are understandably upset at the idea that the Camino might no longer pass through the village where Santo Domingo was born, and where his vocation as protector of pilgrims developed. I am on their side in this. Plus, the Camino has suffered enough damage from speculation and development in recent years, so anything we can do help preserve the route for the future is welcome.
 
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This book's focus is on reducing the risk of failure through being well prepared.
Peaceable Projects Inc.
Peaceable Projects Inc. is a U.S.-based non-profit group that brings the vast resources of the wide world together with the ongoing needs of the people who live, work, and travel on the Camino de Santiago pilgrim trail network in Spain.
A

Anemone del Camino

Guest
Of all the vilages to sacrifice. How sad and ironic. Not to mention the loss of Acacio & Orietta's welcoming albergue.

So, how much money does the Cathedral make with us walking to it? How about it covers the cost of a couple of footbridges?
 

CJ Williams

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Via Turonense (1995)
Camino Francés (1996; 1999; 2001; 2005; 2008; 2011)
Camino Aragonés (2000)
Of all the vilages to sacrifice. How sad and ironic. Not to mention the loss of Acacio & Orietta's welcoming albergue.

So, how much money does the Cathedral make with us walking to it? How about it covers the cost of a couple of footbridges?
What? Let's not mix apples and oranges. It is not the responsibility of the Archbishop, or the Chapter of the cathedral, to provide access to Viloria via footbridges or any other means; it is the responsibility of the regional governments through which the Camino passes (in this case, Castile and Leon) to guarantee the integrity of and preservation of the monuments which exist within their territoty.

This is what we pay taxes for. If the question is indeed that the motorway is cutting across the path of the Camino and would create a danger for walkers, then it is a small matter for the Ministry of Public Works and the regional government to have had foresight enough to account for this in their planning and to appropriately budget either a tunnel under the motorway or a footbridge above it, rather than arbitrarily deciding to just move the Camino and deprive Viloria of an important part of its history.

Finally, I really don't think you realize how much it costs the Archdiocese of Santiago de Compostela to maintain the cathedral open all day, every day, and to provide the reception that it does for the thousands of pilgrims who arrive daily. The Cathedral Chapter is not raking in money hand over fist. But, please, let's not take this thread down that rabbit hole. Let's keep the focus on the issue of Viloria and the diversion of the path of the Camino. :)
 
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CJ Williams

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Via Turonense (1995)
Camino Francés (1996; 1999; 2001; 2005; 2008; 2011)
Camino Aragonés (2000)
We have always been impressed by the underpasses and footbridges which Spain has, in our experience, provided under or over new road construction. This would seem to be needed here, justified by the World Heritage status of the Camino and this section in particular. Can the petition be made to reflect this? or is it too late to amend it?
Petition signed.
Thank you for signing, Tia Valeria! As to your question about the petition being amended, I don't know. Perhaps I can find a way to contact the authors and suggest it. In any case, I am certain that the Mayor of Viloria must have proposed something similar. I will try to find out more information.
 

CJ Williams

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Via Turonense (1995)
Camino Francés (1996; 1999; 2001; 2005; 2008; 2011)
Camino Aragonés (2000)
Hi, Navarricano,
I have signed the petition -- any move to take the Camino away from its wanderings through little villages and put it at the side of the N-120 is in my opinion a change in the wrong direction.

But what I didn't see in the description of the opposition was any mention is whether the opponents have a reasonable alternative to the government's plan. Or are you saying that the Camino can just stay exactly where it is and the A-12 can easily go around it? Having a solution makes it harder for the government to stick with its unwise plan, IMO. Buen camino, Laurie
Hi Laurie, thanks for signing the petition! I doubt that the residents of the village are asking that the path of the motorway be altered. I'm sure that such a proposal would be met with deafening silence given the costs involved, but I'm equally certain that the Mayor of Viloria must have proposed something like a footbridge, or tunnel, or something else to that effect. I am in the process of trying to gather more information about the situation and will let you all know what I am able to find out. God bless!
 

susanglori

New Member
Of all the vilages to sacrifice. How sad and ironic. Not to mention the loss of Acacio & Orietta's welcoming albergue.

So, how much money does the Cathedral make with us walking to it? How about it covers the cost of a couple of footbridges?

I'm pretty sure the Camino doesn't"make" any money from pilgrims walking through towns. This project is affecting the towns through which it passes by taking away money that would otherwise be spent in them by pilgrims passing through but there is no financial gain to the Cathedral.
 
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Kanga

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Staff member
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Francés x 5, Le Puy x 2, Arles, Tours, Norte, Madrid, Via de la Plata, Portuguese, Primitivo
Done. I bet that in re-routing the Camino to run parallel to the N120 a hard easy-to-maintain all-weather path will be constructed. I find it so sad that various authorities feel the need to "improve" the Camino. The result is often that we no longer meander gently along soft dirt or mud paths but stride purposefully straight ahead on paths of shiny white stones, hot black bitumen or unforgiving concrete.
 

mspath

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances, autumn/winter; 2004, 2005-2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
Done. Unfortunately what Kanga wrote is so true; we veterans can only yearn for the meandering paths of the not so distant past. Those were the days.

"J’aimerai toujours le temps des cerises
C’est de ce temps-là que je garde au cœur"
Jean-Baptiste Clement, 1866
 
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A

Anemone del Camino

Guest
What? Let's not mix apples and oranges. It is not the responsibility of the Archbishop, or the Chapter of the cathedral, to provide access to Viloria via footbridges or any other means; it is the responsibility of the regional governments through which the Camino passes (in this case, Castile and Leon) to guarantee the integrity of and preservation of the monuments which exist within their territoty.
Well, I keep reading on this forum that the whole "100km to get your credencial" and refusal to change the rule to perhaps return to the Camino back to a "purer pilgrimage" (for lack of a better word, could also say in my onw lingo "curb the circus") rather than a fun week of fun in Spain to get a certificate is due to the Church wanting money and power from the Camino. Money and power ... So maybe money and power is not why the Church won't change the rule, but if it is why doens't it use its power and money to keep the historical relevance of this route, especially as it honors one of its Saints.
 

La Barre

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Year of past OR future Camino
C. Frances, Roncesvalles to SdC 2010
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Done. One of my best days on the Camino in 2014, at Acacio and Orrieta's albergue.
 

CarlaH

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SJPP to Santiago 2014
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jmcarp

Veteran Member
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Camino Frances, 2013
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Done. One of my best days on the Camino in 2014, at Acacio and Orrieta's albergue.
Ditto. Same for us in 2013. We shared one of our most memorable evening meals around the little table at the Refugio Acacio y Orietta.
 

domigee

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2020? Looks like.... nowhere! 😁
Signed. Thank you for bringing it to our attention, Navarricano.
 

sillydoll

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2002 CF: 2004 from Paris: 2006 VF: 2007 CF: 2009 Aragones, Ingles, Finisterre: 2011 X 2 on CF: 2013 'Caracoles': 2014 CF and Ingles 'Caracoles":2015 Logrono-Burgos (Hospitalero San Anton): 2016 La Douay to Aosta/San Gimignano to Rome:
So, what is the situation now?
The first notice was posted over 5 years ago and it seems that Viloria de Rioja is still on the Camino.
 

navarro

Active Member
It may be my misunderstanding of the language but is the Camino through the village going to be cut off by the autopista? It reads as though the petition wants the road to run through the village :eek:. I am happy to sign - just want to know what I am signing!!!

Blessings
Tio Tel
I live near that site and I am surprised by that news. I have pass this evening, I have a look about the trace of the motorway and I have found that:
The straight distance beteeen Viloria and N-120 is about 650 m. The motorway will pass between Viloria and N-120.
The actual access to Viloria from N-120, used by the Camino is a commarcal road that connects with other villages and returns to the N-120. The distances are. From N-120 to Viloria (east) About 1 Km. From Viloria to link N-120 (west) About 1 Km. The distance between both points in N-120 1,6 Km.
It is mandatory to give or conserve access to the villages near the motorway. Usually the old ways (N-120) are used to give services and link the villages along the motorway, so they must conserve the access to Viloria from N-120. The motorways cannot have crosses at the same level, so the motorway will cross the access by an upper or lower pass.
Unless the motorway closes one of the access, in my oppinion improbably because, that road provides entrance to agricultural fields the actual trace of Camino will continue.
If the link between the both entrances to Viloria is built, I think not neccesary because the traffic will be very low, the option to access Viloria will continue open. If people of Viloria marks it well and clearI think it musnt be a problem.
 
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