Buff Bay and 21 adjoining communities are keeping abreast of technology as the Lynch Park Information and Telecommunications Centre is now open offering business incubation services and Internet access.
Opened on January 14 by Minister with responsibility for Information, Telecommunications and Special Projects in the Office of the Prime Minister, Daryl Vaz, the centre can incubate three small businesses and has a total of 24 computer stations. In his remarks at the ceremony, Mr. Vaz called on West Portlanders to use the IT resource to drive development in their communities. Buff Bay is renown as a entry point for nature tourism; agro forestry and maroon heritage tours.
"The indications are that this sub project can become self sustaining in a relatively short period of time provided the community supports the venture," Minister Vaz said.
The Lynch Park IT centre is a project of the government's Universal Access Fund (UAF); West Portland organisations and also corporate private partners Digicel and Microsoft. The Fund is replenished by a tax on telecommunications companies.
Using best practices developed at previous UAF projects, the Sir Howard Cooke Character Development Centre in Nannyville and JN Source in Marverly, the Lynch Park project was completed in 13 months at a cost of $4.2 million.
Community involvement included the Buff Bay Community Development Committee; Buff Bay Development Area Committee; Buff Bay Corridor Management Committee; Buff Bay Business Watch; Buff Bay Vocational and Training Centre; Social Development Commission Buff Bay Development Area; Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management (ODPEM) and the Buff Bay Zonal Committee.