Communication Specialist, Urban Development Corporation (UDC), Abigail Edwards, says the $1.3-billion Closed Harbour Beach Park project is approximately 60 per cent complete and is on track to conclude in November 2020 despite the onset of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
She told JIS News that the new facility will be the largest free public-access beach in the city of Montego Bay and will also provide much-needed green space for outdoor recreational activities for the entire family.
She noted that the 16-acre property, which is being developed through primary funding from the Tourism Enhancement Fund (TEF), will also offer commercial opportunities and other socio-economic benefits coming out of a UDC-commissioned Environmental Impact Assessment.
Ms. Edwards said that the Corporation, in collaboration with the TEF, recently launched a ‘Name the Park’ competition, inviting members of the public to suggest names for the development.
“The UDC sees this as an important part of the entire process and is happy to have input from the public on a project of this magnitude,” she noted.
Meanwhile, Ms. Edwards said the UDC fully supports the Government’s thrust to resume activities in the construction sector as part of the COVID-19 response and recovery effort.
“The UDC remains committed to making development happen in Jamaica through this difficult period and beyond,” she told JIS News.
She noted that the entity has resumed a number of projects, with measures implemented to ensure the safety of workers on site, including installation of additional hand-washing stations.
Among the projects is the Montego Bay Waterfront Protection Infrastructure development aimed at mitigating coastal erosion and strengthening climate change resiliency.
“The project entails the repair of the existing groyne and underwater sill structures that are critical to protecting the beach areas from erosion. This will ensure the sustainability of any future development,” Ms. Edwards informed.
She noted that over in St. Ann, a gate was erected at the entrance to the Ocho Rios Bay Beach Promenade to allow controlled access and to secure assets on site.
Repairs were also done in the car park of the Ocho Rios Commercial Centre.