The towns that are part of the Pehuenche Route are Paso Nevado, Pehuenche, Armerillo, San Carlos de la Campana, La Suiza, Las Garzas, La Mina, Los Álamos, and el Médano. Apart from being the last settlements that are found along the Pehuenche Route before the international crossing, these towns have specific characteristics due to being entrenched in the Andes Mountain Range, permitting access to a mountain experience and the benefits of the natural environment and energy generation, along with depending on the accessibility and demand generated by the international route.
Within the framework of the public policy of regional integration, an investment has been made in the paving of the corridor entitled Route 115 CH, and the route is declared as an investment that contributes to increasing the area's tourism potential.
Today, the stable population of this corridor is grouped into nine towns with an estimate of fifty houses in each town and one thousand inhabitants in total. They are precariously integrated in the area’s economic activity chains in these settlements that are found along the Pehuenche Route. Its economy is fed by the provision of services in the generation industry, tourism, and farming and livestock labor.
The communities of the Pehuenche Route are located on the road towards Argentina, which has great natural attractions and tourism potential. The members of these towns aim for their sectors to leverage support and resources for the development of the area with the installation of the road as a scenic tourism route, thereby diversifying local employment and taking advantage of the opportunities for positive networking with the co-existence of tourism, local development, and generation.
The area's economy functions with family units that have various sources of income. They carry out activities related to construction, generation projects, tourism services, livestock production, and agriculture.
Installation and Replacement of LED Lamps Route Ch-115
The aim of this project is to improve the quality of life and road safety by providing the primary roads and transit sectors of the surrounding communities linked to the international route (CH-115) and Maule plants with public lighting. To do this, the adjacent communities will be equipped with an approximate total of 3,700 meters of LED lamps which will be installed on the Pehuenche international route (CH-115), from Km 60 to Km 103, distributed in the sectors of:
- Paso Nevado, with 300 meters
- Pehuenche, 1000 meters
- Armerillo, 200 meters
- San Carlos, 400 meters
- Las Garzas, 400 meters
- La Suiza, 800 meters
- Los Álamos 400 meters
- El Médano, 200 meters
Support Program for the Entrepreneurship and Development of Suppliers
It is necessary to promote the economic development of small entrepreneurs to increase their business, organizational, and commercial capacities. Furthermore, the program aims to integrate them into the regional development process and simultaneously optimize the use of productive resources. The geographic area of these projects is the Pehuenche Route close to the operations of the Maule hydroelectric plants.
DESCRIPTION OF TOWNS AND PROJECTS
Together with the town members from the Pehuenche Route, Enel collected information over a period of approximately nine months, which included holding 45 meetings with over 500 participants. The vision and description of each town was designed through these meetings. A road map was also created as an outcome of this process, with the aim of facilitating the analysis, and subsequently being able to manage relations with strategic criteria towards the collective vision for the territory. The projects resulting from the participatory study process can be included within three broader categories: enabling investment, economic development projects, and projects related to quality of life.
PASO NEVADO COMMUNITY
Paso Nevado is described as a united and supportive community in a place with nature, clean air, peacefulness, and resources for enjoying a healthy life. Paso Nevado is a community with XXX people.
The town of Pehuenche is defined as a community that is united by love for nature and peacefulness. Its inhabitants recognize that they would like to improve their quality of life (roads, water, light, public space), with the goal of harnessing its natural resources to be self-sufficient and offering products and services to visitors.
The members of this town are described as a group that is mindful of the natural environment and heritage where they live, and they love the peacefulness and the security granted to them by the neighborhood union. Their interests lie in “having Armerillo equipped and connected and for it to be known for its sustainable development in harmony with the environment and the kindness of its people.”
SAN CARLOS DE LA CAMPANA COMMUNITY
This town, one of the smallest on the Route, is defined as a town that loves the surrounding peacefulness and nature. They express their interest in conserving it and improving its electricity connectivity by integrating public lamps to improve road safety and to also have access to health and entertainment services.
- Raw Water Collection and Distribution System : In partnership with the Fundación Casa de la Paz and D&D Constructora, the project entitled “Improvement of water collection” has been carried out, ending with the collection of raw water to supply the community. A new, more efficient water collection system was built which involves two water intakes in masonry, a reinforced 1,000-liter tank, a 10,000-liter tank, and a sand filter, including the connection to the already existing internal network in the Community. The works were carried out during January and February 2018, and it was formally handed over to the community in its closing ceremony celebrated on Tuesday, March 6.
LA SUIZA COMMUNITY
Located at Km 75 of the CH-115 Route, the La Suiza community is defined as a kind town in a tranquil natural environment with an excellent climate. Its interests are to improve access to basic services, road safety through public lamps, improve leisure areas, and be able to generate income through services along the route and tourism.
LAS GARZAS COMMUNITY
Located at Km 80 of the Pehuenche Route, the town of Las Garzas is known as a kind and united community, with a natural environment and a superb climate that depends greatly on family farming, livestock production, and self-consumption. They want to be recognized as “the artisans of Las Garzas,” and to maintain an easy-going lifestyle with access to services and meeting and leisure areas.
- Access to electrical energy : The aim of the project is to remedy this lack of access to electricity and/or improve the quality of the electrical supply to homes, public roads, and community centers in rural areas. The project aims to overcome the barrier to socio-economic development of the community due to a lack of access to electricity in the territory. It involves the construction of power lines supplied by Enel installations, encompassing families that do not have electricity, that have problems with ownership and a shortage of resources, particularly in the towns adjacent to the hydroelectric plants, which in this case would be the Las Garzas community. This project includes contracting an engineering study and the improvement of the residential electrical installations in 15 homes, which were financed through a donation from Enel to the neighborhood councils.
LA MINA COMMUNITY
The town of La Mina is a small settlement along the International Route where there are rest stops with public services and security that regulates the international border pass. It is defined as the country's port of entry. People live here who enjoy and take care of the natural environment and what it provides. They want to live in a peaceful and safe place with an identity, where they can offer products and their own experiences while harnessing their natural resources to attract tourists.
- Los Álamos - La Mina Pedestrian Footbridge: Good viability is a functional instrument for local development. Viability connects families and promotes initiatives of social and economic development. The project involves the construction of a pedestrian footbridge that traverses the Río Maule to connect the Los Álamos and La Mina communities. These towns are located 3.8 kilometers away by road, but with a pedestrian footbridge, this distance is reduced to 1 kilometer. Furthermore, the only healthcare service and school in the upper Maule are found in the Los Álamos community.
- Artisan Village: With a focus on the economic development targeted by the communities neighboring our hydroelectric plants, a project has been designed for the construction and commissioning of a room for creating artisan products, such as fabrics, weaved crafts, jewels, wooden furniture, medicinal herbs, and their subsequent sale. These products will be the result of program for developing skills in entrepreneurs that Enel is funding on the Pehuenche Route in partnership with the Sembra association.
LOS ALAMOS COMMUNITY
They are described as a community of close neighbors and family members who support each other and live peacefully and safely. The town of Los Álamos is a cluster of homes that came together as a result of the construction processes of the hydroelectric plants. This settlement has a population that provides services to the construction processes and also seeks to become solidified as a mountain town with equipment for companies and tourists, while inviting these tourists to stay there and helping their connectivity with the route.
Similar to what is occurring in many of the cases, the primary need in the community of Los Álamos involves the installation of basic infrastructures such as access to water, viability, and sanitary solutions, which are essential for human wellbeing and to be able to look towards the future with a development perspective.
- Sanitary Solutions: The project involves a treatment system and the disposal of residential liquid waste from community homes, where afterwards, efforts will be made to implement business projects and develop suppliers. This will be carried out with the aim of improving living conditions in the surrounding communities and establishing basic conditions that are necessary for their development.
- Water Withdrawal and Distribution Project: The goal is to facilitate access to water and guarantee access to clean water and sanitation. The proposed initiative is the withdrawal and distribution of water from the well that will feed the future RPW (Rural Potable Water). The system is implemented through the installation of a submersible pump up to 60 meters in order to pump and conduct the water through the distribution network towards the 250 residents belonging to the towns.
- Los Álamos - La Mina Pedestrian Footbridge: The project involves the construction of a pedestrian footbridge that traverses the Río Maule to connect the Los Álamos and La Mina communities. These towns are located 3.8 kilometers away by road, but with a pedestrian footbridge, this distance is reduced to 1 kilometer. Furthermore, the only healthcare service and school in the upper Maule are found in the Los Álamos community.
EL MEDANO COMMUNITY
The settlement of El Médano differs from the other mountain towns because it is largely a town with second homes and an emphasis on the environment's natural attractions and the characteristics present due to the hot springs in the area. They are lacking electrification and other basic services, but they are defined as a tight-knit, organized community that is committed to maintaining the peacefulness of our environment and improving our quality of life, and which wants to be known as a place for spending time together, enjoying, and resting.
- Raw Water Collection and Distribution System Upgrade: In partnership with the Fundación Casa de la Paz and D&D Constructora, the project entitled “Improvement of water collection” has been carried out, ending with the collection of raw water to supply the community. A new, more efficient water collection system was built which involves two water intakes in masonry, two reinforced 1,000-liter tanks, two 5,400-liter tanks, and two sand filters, including the connection to the already existing internal network in the Community. The works were carried out during January and February 2018, and it was formally handed over to the community in its closing ceremony celebrated on Tuesday, March 6.
- Access to electrical energy: he aim is to remedy this lack of electricity and/or improve the quality of the electrical supply to homes, public roads, and community centers in rural areas, specifically in the town of El Médano. This involves the construction of power lines supplied from Enel installations and encompasses the families that do not have electricity. This project is executed in different stages. The first is the feasibility study and the improvement of residential electrical installations of 49 homes.