Costa Rica’s New Southern Highway Should Bring Boom

New construction on Costa Rica’s southern highway, known as the Costanera, along the Pacific Coast will soon be completed, cutting the time of the once dicey and bone-jarring drive between Quepos and Domical in half.

Combined with the expected completion this year of the Caldera toll road from Costa Rica’s capital, San Jose, to Caldera and Puntarenas, the new southern highway will help open a once-neglected section of Costa Rica’s magnificent Pacific coast to development.

All the major bridges from Jaco to Dominical are now complete and open. Just two years ago all traffic had to negotiate two sometimes impassable rivers.

The road widening, upgrading and construction project was designed to provide faster, safer and more efficient communications between the city of San José and the Pacific coast, including the city of Puntarenas, the port of Caldera and all the tourist towns along the Costanera Sur highway, while also providing a connection with the central, southern and northern regions.

Ronan McMahon, executive director of international property marketing firm Pathfinder Real Estate, says he’s been bullish on Costa Rica’s Southern Zone for some time

“This is the area that runs south of Quepos to the border with Panama on Costa Rica’s Pacific side,” said McMahon. “The scenery is amazing, but prices have stayed low because it was difficult to get to. Now all that has changed. The will affect property values in this zone in a huge way because anything that improves the accessibility of a piece of real estate increases its desirability. More desirable means more valuable.

“Costa Rica is a name-brand destination for retirees and investors already,” McMahon said, “and soon a huge chunk of it that was nearly inaccessible will suddenly be within easy drive time of the capital and the international airport. The game is going to change along the southern highway.”

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