$230M Renovation for Reynolds Pier

Photo: Glenis Rose Port Authority of Jamaica (PAJ) Project Manager, Christopher Hamilton.

Story Highlights

  • The Reynolds Pier in Ocho Rios, St. Ann, is to be renovated by the Port Authority of Jamaica (PAJ) at a cost of $230 million.
  • Come November, Falmouth will be hosting the three largest cruise ships in the world. They include: Harmony of the Seas, Allure of the Seas, and Oasis of the Seas, which are part of Royal Caribbean Cruise Line.
  • “If we have (adequate) modern first class port facilities in Montego Bay, Ocho Rios and Falmouth, then there is every reason to believe Jamaica can indeed be one of, if not the main port of call in the region,” the PAJ’s Project Manager, Christopher Hamilton, asserts.

The Reynolds Pier in Ocho Rios, St. Ann, is to be renovated by the Port Authority of Jamaica (PAJ) at a cost of $230 million.

This undertaking forms part of what the PAJ’s Project Manager, Christopher Hamilton, says are plans to reposition Jamaica as the Caribbean’s premier cruise destination.

He made the disclosure during a recent interview with JIS News.

Mr. Hamilton said the project, slated to commence shortly, will entail improvements to the pier’s parking area, among other provisions aimed at boosting ground transportation arrangements for visitors and other stakeholders.

Additionally, he said a promenade will be built along the waterfront to connect the pier with the town of Ocho Rios, thereby enabling pedestrian movement along that area.

He further stated that general upgrading work, aimed at enhancing the facility’s overall aesthetics and ambience, will also be carried out.

Mr. Hamilton said the project is aimed at bringing the Reynolds Pier on par with the Falmouth Cruise Ship Pier in Trelawny, thereby providing Ocho Rios with much needed space to attract more mega cruise liners.

“Currently, Ocho Rios cannot accommodate some of the larger ships that go to Falmouth. (As such) we want to ensure that we have (adequate) modern top class facilities to attract (more of) the type of luxury ships that are being built nowadays, (thereby) making Jamaica a first choice on the cruise itineraries,” he explained.

Mr. Hamilton pointed out that, come November, Falmouth will be hosting the three largest cruise ships in the world. They include: Harmony of the Seas, Allure of the Seas, and Oasis of the Seas, which are part of Royal Caribbean Cruise Line.

“If we have (adequate) modern first class port facilities in Montego Bay, Ocho Rios and Falmouth, then there is every reason to believe Jamaica can indeed be one of, if not the main port of call in the region,” he argued.

Mr. Hamilton further informed that commercial activities, such as the exportation of sugar and limestone, for which Reynolds Pier was being used, will be maintained and conducted alongside cruise shipping engagements, under “better streamlined and organized” arrangements.

“We will certainly give the facility a friendlier look and ease the congestion as best as possible. We want to create that ‘wow’ factor (that makes) our visitors as comfortable as possible…by creating a kind of experience that will give them a positive first impression of Jamaica,” he stated.

The PAJ is currently carrying out transformation work at the Ocho Rios Fishing Village to complement the Reynolds Pier project.

In noting that the Ocho Rios developments are “long overdue”, Mr. Hamilton contended that they will be beneficial to Jamaica in the long run.

“Tourism is big business and we have to position ourselves to capitalize on the opportunities by being proactive. As long as we have the facilities, we should increase our chances of getting the business,” he emphasized.

Mr. Hamilton further assured that “the PAJ will be doing its part to entice the cruise ships (by) making them see Jamaica as a first-call destination.”

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