By Emmanuel Joseph
The Government of Barbados is reporting “significant” progress towards the start of construction on the highly-anticipated multi-million-dollar Pierhead Development Project that was slated to begin last year.
Senior Minister of Infrastructural Projects and Town Planning Dr William Duguid revealed on Monday that “the environmental impact assessment (EIA) has been received and they [developers] are scheduling for late next month, the first town hall meeting on the development”.
“We are going through the environmental impact assessment now…. So we are making progress and the date should be set shortly for next month, but certainly the environmental impact assessment has been received and we are making significant progress on the development,” Senior Minister Duguid told Barbados TODAY in an interview.
When contacted, real estate mogul Sir Paul Altman who is one of the stakeholders in the project said “everything is rolling good”.
However, he was not in a position to provide a firm date for the first town hall meeting, saying only that an application was made for it be held at the end of June.
Town hall meetings and EIAs are among the primary requirements that must be satisfied by developers before town planning approval can be given for major projects of this nature.
The project has been in the pipeline for the past 20 years, although it is now being undertaken by new investors.
Last year, Sir Paul told Barbados TODAY the investors were ready to begin construction except for “all the legal and planning processes required by Government”.
The project is expected to revitalise Bridgetown, create new business opportunities for small entrepreneurs, boost the economy, and attract major investment to Barbados.
The managing director of Altman Real Estate has referred to the proposed scheme as Limegrove Lifestyle Centre on steroids.
“Over 80 per cent of the perimeter of that property is waterfront, so you would assume that if you’ve got 80 per cent of the boundary being water that a lot of water comes into play. So you have boats, a beach, savannahs with a beach restaurant…. Fifty per cent of the people who will come there will come by water taxi and boat,” the prominent real estate developer said in identifying some of the features of the Pierhead Project.
The theme for the overall project is live, work, and play. The ambitious venture had envisioned an expansive marina for luxury yacht owners and an accompanying condo facility, luxury branded stores, bars, entertainment facilities, and a hotel complex.
It is set to encompass about 10.8 acres comprising lands from Fort Willoughby, proceeding westward, including the Dry Dock, along the Wharf, along the Chamberlain Bridge, Cavan’s Lane, and on to Bay Street and up to Parfitt Alley.