More than two months after work on a section of the Lewis/Wickham Boardwalk in Bridgetown was scheduled for completion, a member of the business community wants to know what is behind the hold up.
Barbados Port Inc announced at the end of June that a section of the walkway between the Chamberlain Bridge and the lights near Chefette Restaurants would be closed for six to eight weeks to allow contractors PNC Construction and Equipment Rentals Inc to carry out refurbishment work.
However, little progress appears apparent, and Committee member of The Barbados Revitalization Initiative Sharon Christie told Barbados TODAY with the busy Christmas season fast approaching the delay was disconcerting.
Worse yet, Christie said, no one seems to know what is happening and how long the project will drag on.
“None of us can get an answer as to when it is going to be finished, and that is a problem,” she said.
“Here we are going into the tourist season . . . and it is no different. What are they doing that can take that long? Is work happening or has it been stalled? I don’t know the answers. All I know is that tourists, tour buses, taxi men and [pedestrians] are all inconvenienced.
“That boardwalk should be finish and I would like somebody to give us an answer as to why it is not finished and more importantly, when is it going to be finished. That is the more important answer I would like,” Christie told Barbados TODAY.
With the flow of traffic in the area hampered, people were likely to avoid Bridgetown, Christie surmised. In addition, she noted, the renovation was also taking place at the height of the island’s 50th anniversary of Independence and when several yachts were due here, some of which were to dock in the careenage.
Several attempts by Barbados TODAY to reach Bridgetown Port Inc proved unsuccessful.
Regarding the overall appearance of The City and its surroundings, Christie said while businesses were willing to invest to beautify and enhance the area, they were strapped for cash and were in need of some form of incentives.
“We need incentives to encourage investment in business. Right now businesses do not have any spare money, Barbadians do not have any spare disposable income that can be used to energize the economy particularly in Bridgetown,” she said.
“Businesses invest with the plan to make profit in the future. If they cannot see that profit, they are not going to invest. It is that simple . . . encourage businesses to invest and you will have a snowball effect on everything,” she said.