JIS News

The Rodney Memorial, buildings and colonnade in Emancipation Square, Spanish Town, St. Catherine has been transformed at a cost of more than $33 million.
Rehabilitation work on the west wing of the historic buildings was recently completed at a cost of some $8.1 million.
The project, financed by the Government of Jamaica and the European Union (EU), forms part of Government’s plans to create a heritage tourism product, under a programme to redevelop heritage towns managed by the Urban Development Corporation (UDC).
In June 1988, the UDC received a grant of some $18 million to restore the east wing and to create space for commercial activity for the Spanish Town commercial community. This section has been completed and currently houses a restaurant and craft shops.
Speaking at the recent opening of the west wing of the Rodney building, Head of the European Delegation to Jamaica, Ambassador Gerd Jarchow, said the project was a significant step towards the enhancement of Jamaica’s heritage.
With the move by CARICOM toward integration, he said countries would needed to invest more in cultural activities in order to protect their individual cultural identities.
“The preservation of the Rodney memorial and colonnade was simply a part of a comprehensive strategy to allow Jamaicans to maximize the potential of the country’s built heritage,” Mr. Jarchow said.
Head of the UDC, Marjorie Campbell, said the building was managed under a lease agreement by the Spanish Town Historic District Preservation Commission.
She pointed out that the UDC was not only involved in the physical restoration of the building, but was also responsible for getting “a socio-economic survey done to inform the strategy for economic growth and infrastructural development for the greater Spanish Town area”.

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