The Minister without portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, Dr Horace Chang has declared, that the government plans to make Falmouth the finest destination in the Caribbean.
He was speaking at a function held on the Falmouth Pier which presented an update of the Port Authority of Jamaica community projects in Falmouth.
As a result, over $2 billion is being spent to upgrade the cruise shipping town. Professor Gordon Shirley,President and CEO of the Port Authority of Jamaica, detailed the projects and their costs:
- US$7.4 million for an artisan village, museum and shops
- J$350 million on the new Falmouth market
- J$46 million on the craft market on Seaboard Street
- J$107 million on Tharpe Street streetscape
- J$73 million on Market Street streetscape
- US$3 million on dredging to simultaneously facilitate the berthing of two Oasis-sized vessels.
- US$1.1 million on further wharf development
Professor Shirley gave a summary of each project currently underway, startin g with the Falmouth Market.
The new Falmouth Market on Market Street was scheduled for opening in November 2016. One year and one month on, it is still not open. Professor Shirley stated that they are approaching completion and the Trelawny Parish Council will take over the final phase.
Ground was broken for the new market way back in April 2015.
A date was still not given for opening. Professor Shirley said it will be ready “in the next few months.”
He stressed that when completed, it will help ease the overcrowding of the town and create a better shopping experience for locals and visitors alike.
Project cost J$350 million.
The Falmouth craft vendors have been searching for a home ever since the first cruise ship docked in Falmouth on the 17th of February, 2011.
They were moved to a temporary facility at the corner of Market and Seaboard Streets. Two weekends ago, the craft market was broken into and looted.
The Port Authority was pleased to announce the completion of the first phase of their project to erect craft shops on Seaboard Street. When completed, it will house all of Falmouth’s 31 craft vendors currently occupying the temporary facility.
Project cost: J$46 million
The Falmouth street-scaping project has been ongoing since 2016. Market Street is approaching completion and in the next few weeks, it will be Tharp Street’s turn.
Project cost: J$73 million for Market Street and J$107 million for Tharp Street.
Port Authority is introducing a pedicab service that should really help minimize visitor harassment.
These rickshaw type forms of transportation will have a rider as tour guide. They will take visitors to Falmouth’s historic sites.
Plans are afoot to get HEART trainees trained to operate the pedicabs.
Port Authority has already acquired 12 pedicabs.
Benefiting the Falmouth Community
In laying out the details of the project, Professor Shirley stated his awareness that the Falmouth community at large had a negative perception of the cruise shipping development. Falmouth felt as if enough attention was not being paid to its citizens. They did not feel a part of the development, nor that the development was benefiting them.
The projects therefore, were designed to not only improve the attractiveness of the town, but also to get the people involved and feel a part of the development.