PORT ANTONIO — Residents of Moore Town, in the Rio Grande Valley area of Portland, will now have easier access to their community with the rehabilitation of 3.6 km of roadway.
The project, facilitated by the Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF) at a cost of $38.4 million, was funded by the European Union Banana Support Programme (EUBSP) which provided approximately $33 million, while the community contributed the other $5.3 million. The scope of work also included the construction of drains, curb and channel drains and culverts.
Addressing a function at the Moore Town Health Centre on Wednesday (May 4), to officially hand over the rehabilitated thoroughfare to the community, JSIF Board Member, Celia Champagnie, said that in all $43.5 million was invested in improving infrastructure, an agro business and a craft training programme for Moore Town and Cornwall Barracks.
According to her, the investment will increase access to social services, and expand farm yields for the over 1,200 residents. She also lauded the EU, the National Works Agency (NWA) and other agencies for partnering to bring it to completion.
Member of Parliament for Eastern Portland, Dr. Donald Rhodd, hailed JSIF and the EU BSP for contributing significantly to the development of rural communities. He said these improvements will motivate residents to assist in developing their communities.
The main thrust of the EUBSP is to create access and improvements to the social and economic infrastructure of traditional banana growing communities, reducing rural to urban migration and creating an environment that will facilitate sustainable income and employment opportunities.
By LORNA WILLIAMS, PORT ANTONIO REGIONAL OFFICE