INAH to oversee AMLO’s Mayan Train project

INAH will closely watch López Obrador's train project to avoid damaging archaeological sites

INAH to oversee AMLO’s Mayan Train project
The INAH has located over 60,000 sites in the country where there have been archaeological findings - Photo: Manuel Valdés/AP
English 04/09/2018 15:52 Alida Piñón Mexico City Actualizada 15:55
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The National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH) will closely watch the Mayan Tourist Train project to avoid damaging archaeological sites, and although it is known that there are hundreds of remains spread across the five states that the train route will cover, the institution will only intervene to suggest a route adjustment in case of finding an important structure or a buried city.

The Mayan Tourist Train project will go through Cancún, Quintana Roo, Palenque, Playa del Carmen, Tulum, Felipe Carrillo Puerto, Bacalar, Calakmul, Campeche, Mérida, and Valladolid. Furthermore, the route will lead to the Chichén Itzá archaeological site. The railway will cover a total distance of 1,500 kilometers.

INAH director, Diego Prieto, who was appointed by soon-to-be Secretary of Culture Alejandra Frausto to continue serving during the upcoming administration, indicated that he was still to learn the details of the project, but that he would eventually handle its oversight.

“There is an approved right of way for several segments of the projected railroad. In any case, we will make sure that the outline corresponds to areas that don’t affect the archaeological heritage. On the contrary, we hope that this project will allow us to continue investigating and saving archaeological sites in the territory,” he claimed.

“Once the official outline is announced, we will be able to compare it with our archaeological sites map. The INAH has located over 60,000 sites in the country where there have been archaeological findings, though many of them could be nothing more than concentrations of ceramic material. On the other hand, there could be entire camps with stone objects, city foundations, or even major building structures. This is something that we will have to revise in cooperation with the institutions promoting this project,” he added.

The director claimed that the Mayan Train project could contribute to social development in the territory, as well as the betterment of communities all along the peninsula, which would in turn lead to economic growth while preserving and promoting Mexico’s cultural heritage.


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