JIS News

Story Highlights

  • The extensive renovation works, being undertaken on the Turtle River Road and Cruise Ship Terminal will transform the resort town.
  • UDC and the Port Authority of Jamaica are implementing the works, through $400 million in funding from the TEF.
  • The work being done is only the first phase of the major development of the town.

Minister of Tourism and Entertainment, Hon. Dr. Wykeham McNeill, is expressing satisfaction with the progress of infrastructure work being undertaken in Ocho Rios.

He said that the extensive renovation works, being undertaken on the Turtle River Road and Cruise Ship Terminal will transform the resort town.

The Urban Development Corporation (UDC) and the Port Authority of Jamaica are implementing the works, through $400 million in funding from the Tourism Enhancement Fund (TEF).

“This is truly a major infrastructural programme here in Ocho Rios. We will do some work at the Cruise Ship Terminal where it will be fully upgraded and redone, including the parking area where we will also be building kiosks and other things to make it attractive and be able to house rotating craft traders on site,” Dr. McNeill said.

He was speaking to JIS News on Wednesday, December 18, during a tour of the work sites. The Minister was accompanied by his junior Minister, Hon. Damion Crawford; Minister of State in the Ministry of Transport, Works and Housing, Hon. Richard Azan; Senior Director for Special Projects, Port Authority of Jamaica, Dr. Paul Robertson, among other officials.

Dr. McNeill informed further that the Turtle River main road will be fully pedestranized and landscaped, along with other undertakings.

The work being done is only the first phase of the major development of the town. “Other phases of the project will see Main Street in Ocho Rios receiving major infrastructural works, looping back around on the promenade, which will be fully upgraded and redone.

“This will be a complete transformation of the port as well as the town that will provide the ship passengers with an easy loop around sections of the town on foot.  This will also be good for stop-over arrivals … as it will bring the town of Ocho Rios back into full play,” Dr. McNeill said.

The first phase works are scheduled to be completed by February 2014.  “We want the works to be completed quickly as the (winter) season is going to be long and very intense.  We expect to have a lot of cruise ship visitors this year and so there will be no perfect time for the refurbishing works so the reason for this tour is to ensure that we coordinate the works to ensure that we have the least interruptions as possible,” Dr. McNeill said.