Basseterre, St. Kitts, July 05, 2016 (SKNIS): The Black Rocks Improvement Project has been fully endorsed by Prime Minister and Parliamentary Representative for the area, Dr. the Honourable Timothy Harris, who has supported the initiative being carried out by the Ministry of Tourism, which will see the renovation and installation of various attractive features in the area, said Minister of Tourism, the Honourable Lindsay Grant.
The project, which is is currently in its first of two phases is off to a very good start, said Minister Grant, while emphasizing that the project will greatly enhance community tourism in Black Rocks and its environs.
“Black Rocks is very significant to us,” said the minister. “It is very historical and we feel that with the improvement that we will bring to Black Rocks over the next couple of months, before the start of the next cruise season, is going to auger well not only with the community of Belle Vue, Saddlers and Tabernacle, but our tourism product in general.”
Minister Grant explained that the Ministry of Tourism is on a drive to increase its community tourism in St. Kitts.
“We are making sure that the community feels a part of the development in tourism,” said the minister. “We think that it is very important that we move people along with the pace of development; so our thrust is going into the various communities to develop the areas, to do new initiatives and innovations in order to increase the awareness of the tourism product and to get more entrepreneurs.”
The beautification initiative is a joint project between the White Gate Corporation and the Ministry of Tourism. The White Gate Corporation is contributing EC$175,000, while the Ministry of Tourism is putting EC$168,000 into the project.
Minister Grant said that the Ministry of Tourism is grateful for the assistance of the White Gate Corporation for its involvement in the project. Also, key to the development of Black Rocks is the Public Works Department (PWD), which is currently rectifying the drainage problem in the area. The minister took the opportunity to thank the PWD for all its efforts.
“We hope that at the end of the day we will give the people of the area something that they will be proud of,” said Minister Grant.
He outlined that other beautification projects underway include the McKnight Beautification Project and another project that will see the enhancement of the Old Road area. According to the minister, these beautification projects should not be limited to Basseterre but to all other areas which have historical features.
“We believe that the tourism project is not only for Basseterre and its confines, but we believe that we have to bring it into the rural area to make sure that everyone feels a part of the projects that we want to do,” said the Minister.
Ellis Hazel, CEO and Managing Director of White Gate Corporation, said that a number of features that Black Rocks will boast upon completion of the project include paved roads, which have both an entrance and exit with two parking areas, a pedestrian walkway, two viewing platforms and 10 to 12 new booths for current and prospective vendors which will be erected in the next couple of months. The stage area will also be enhanced, bathrooms renovated, and other buildings in the area refurbished. Approximately 80 palm trees will be planted on the island main road at Belle Vue leading to Black Rocks. The Black Rocks pasture will also be refurbished.