THIRTY years after San Fernando achieved City status, Mayor Junia Regrello foresees a bright future on the horizon with the youths blazing the trail.
“As mayor and as a parent, I look forward to the day I can pass the reigns of our nation to the next generation in the comfort of knowing they will build on what we have left,” the mayor said in a message commemorating City Day, today.
He said he looks forward to engaging the youths to gain an insight into their vision and plans to take not just the city, but the nation to a brighter and better tomorrow.
“For too long many of us have not seen the forest for the trees. We’ve been missing the bigger picture, whether blinded by traditionalism, political biases or a limited imagination.
“Past generations have fallen short on seeing the potential in our future. Our focus was primarily on building our nation to this point. Thankfully, this generation has been mostly spared these limitations. This generation is brimming with innovators and dreamers armed with the education, aspiration and technology to reach into their dreams and create a new reality. They will now be tasked with guiding us into the future.”
He said in the global village the world has become, young people will and can collaborate with their peers around the world, and can bring the best to TT and the City of San Fernando. “And with the shift towards strengthening the ties between government and private institutions, will certainly have the potential to be the vanguards of a better tomorrow.”
Regrello said as the nation navigates through a sea of economic uncertainty there is an end of this turbulence in sight, which places emphasis on citizens to determine how they can contribute to the growth and development of the city and TT.
He said there are untapped undercurrents of potential opportunities in industries outside of the traditional mould of over saturated jobs that are waiting for young professionals or enterprising entrepreneurs to seize.
“Given what I see on the horizon for our nation and San Fernando, I would happily switch places with our youths,” the mayor said.
The San Fernando Waterfront Development Project, Regrello said, may not have the appearance of other major projects such as the highway infrastructure projects or the dry dock facility identified for La Brea, but it is brimming with possibilities in mechanical and electrical engineering, and in the installation of infrastructure with forward-thinking upgrades. The implementation of green technology - solar, tidal and wind energy - to power the businesses and facilities that will be constructed.
He said there is also room for environmental services to begin the task of reversing the image of the nation as a major trash producer, through recycling and rehabilitation of the waterfront and the surrounding mangroves.
“The necessity for cutting edge IT solutions will provide opportunities for world class services to the patrons, local and foreign, who will visit San Fernando. Business oriented minds would populate the waterfront with services and goods - from cuisine showcasing our culinary skills in seafood - to tour operators taking tourist through the mangroves along the coast.
“And there still remains the soon to be approved and long-awaited upgrades to Skinner Park, which will open up the possibilities of new revamped sporting industry across a vast spectrum of sporting disciplines.”
With San Fernando uniquely positioned to capitalise on the road network that connects to deep south, he believes this will encourage young sporting enthusiasts and professionals to the city to train in track and field, or other similar sports traditionally overlooked due to a lack of facilities.
“Additionally, the waterfront will also factor in competitive water sports such as rowing or sailing. We may also see a spike in sports medicine as a result, to which our city is prepared with a multitude of private institutions with a long history of the provision of medical advancements light years ahead of other locations in Trinidad and the Caribbean.”