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Sunday 18 November 2018
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Letters to the Editor

The Sando waterfront project

THE EDITOR: While I am encouraged by the erection of a billboard-styled notice from the Ministry of Planning and Development concerning commencement of the Waterfront Project, permit me to make a few observations.

This latest incarnation of the project came back as the Re-development Project, excuse me, but when was the first project? You can’t possibly mean the never functional Public Washroom and Municipal Police Station. The notice also said the project ‘was approved by you’. To the best of my knowledge, the plans for this project were never aired publicly for comment or discussion.

Overall, it seems to be a hodge podge set of oddly placed facilities or buildings without a cohesive plan or aesthetics. We have not heard of a transportation hub or area for vending of any sort for crafts, clothing or fruit or improvement of harbour facilities to bring medium sized vessels to boost the economy of the southland.

Boosting the southern economy seems to very important now, due to the proposed shutting down of the Pointe-a-Pierre refinery and the expected mass unemployment to follow. The promotion of sightseeing tours to interesting places around the city can be looked at, places like the San Fernando Hill and Palmiste Park.

There seems little chance of having a Board Walk along Lady Hailes Avenue, due to the lack of seawall protection. This lack of seawall protection seems to again have escaped the attention of the authorities, in this case, the Ministry of Planning and Development.

To the best of my knowledge, the ministry has not held discussions with the different interest groups in the Kings Wharf area, such as the fishermen who have strong views on where they want to be located in a new fish market, the Phase II residents just north of the jetty, taxi drivers and the vendors association.

It seems to be a case of ‘take what you get’ and say ‘thanks’. The proposed Museum at the Old Trinidad Railway Building seems to be dead. A temporary museum was actually started by Junior Bisnath and the late Louis Homer, but was later scrapped by a previous mayor. So, please forgive me for being skeptical about this project, which looks like political hype. As San Fernandians, we have earned the right to be skeptical due to the number of times we have been set-up.

Joel Quintal, San Fernando

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