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The Southwest of Asturias (Spain) is an historically coal mining area from the region, with many operations (open-pit, underground) over the last century (for example, 1.7 million tonnes produced in 2000). Tormaleo area was a key point for coal mining for the region, with over 500 people working in the different mines. A 25km cable-car was constructed to move all the coal from the area to the loading dock in Páramo del Sil (León province), including a 600meter tunnel to cross the Cienfuegos mountain range (elevation: 1.600m). The cable car worked from 1964 to 1998. Abandonment of coal and closing of coal facilities due to the ongoing energy & just transition process has produced an important demographic challenge for the municipality of Ibias, with a 45% population decline between 1999 and 2019 (extra 25-30% loss expected by 2030). The area is a rural, remote mountain area (800-1000m) with poor infrastructure and services. Because of mining activities over the last decades, other rural activities (agriculture, farming or forestry) were gradually abandoned. Alternative and viable economic activities are needed, tourism is one of the most relevant since the potential growth of the area is extremely appealing.
Espacio Tormaleo is a singular recovery project for the southwest of Asturias, by developing a unique infrastructure combining leisure, sustainable tourism, culture and entrepreneurship to transform Tormaleo and the surrounding area in a hub for rural economic development, promoting a viable future to a highly degraded territory due to mining activities in the last decades. With over 10M€ of expected investment, the project will develop a 4.5km cable-car to the old tunnel, that will be recovered and transformed into an exhibition space for the preservation of its historical mining memory, natural & cultural heritage. In the area of the old open-pit coal mine, a cultural hub will be also created as a center for social integration and innovation of the territory, while local development will be catalysed through coworking & coliving spaces. The open-pit mining area (200ha.) will receive 50M€ of additional investment through the Spanish Recovery Plan. It is expected that the restoration of the post-mining area and the creation of Espacio Tormaleo will take place in parallel, with an expected opening date in Spring 2025. Over 100.000 annual visitors are estimated once the full infrastructure is fully operative. In the meantime, the company is working in parallel with the local community and Ibias municipality on a number of initiatives in areas like sustainable tourism, social innovation, education & training, clean energy transition, entrepreneurship, cultural heritage, etc. The whole area is of outstanding natural beauty, surrounded by the Fuentes del Narcea, Degaña e Ibias Natural Park, Biosphere reserve and part of the Natura 2000 network.
– Development of an integral project to valorise and recover the surroundings of the old open pit coal mining facilities in Tormaleo (Ibias, Asturias) in order to promote a viable future to a highly degraded territory due to mining activities in the last decades.
– Foster employment and entrepreneurship, atract additional resources, fix population, generate a proper local development scenario and mitigate the negative impact of descarbonization policies and just transition strategies.
Boost a singular recovery project in order to transform Tormaleo and Ibias in a hub for rural economic development.
through a unique infrastructure that combines tourism, culture, leisure and entrepeneurship in a single location.
Respect for the environment, sustainability, support to vulnerable groups, people at the centre, boost endogeneous resources , social & innovation policies, just transition (leave no one behind).
Job creation & Entrepreneurship
Clean Energy Transition
Innovation & New technologies
A Singular Initiative and Recovery Project Towards a Just Transition for the Southwest Territory of Asturias
Telephone: (+34) 687 927 833
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