Prime Minister David Thompson (right), shares a light moment with (from left) co-owners of Edgewater Villas, Anthony Maughn and Marjorie Riley St. John, and Permanent Secretary in the Prime Minister’s Office, Keith Franklin at the groundbreaking ceremony. (Image: A. Miller)
West coast type development will not be replicated on the east coast of Barbados.
This assurance was given yesterday by Prime Minister David Thompson, as he delivered the feature address at the Edgewater Villas groundbreaking ceremony at Edgewater, Bathsheba, St. Joseph.
Mr. Thompson noted that the proposed initiative would be highly compatible with the Physical Development Plan of Barbados (Amended in 2003) and would have minimum environmental impact on the special development area.??
"I believe that what we are seeing here at Edgewater is a classic example of sensitive and sustainable development.
"It is an interesting attempt to reconcile the conflicting demands of human settlement, the sensible use of land, the development of the physical infrastructure, the diversification of our tourism product and the preservation of our natural environment," the Prime Minister observed.
He observed that the new development had gone to "considerable lengths to protect the natural environment, while at the same time creating employment and wealth in this area".
Mr. Thompson further stated that there would be no sewerage wells or septic tanks in the new project, and that a modern treatment plant would be installed.
He also lauded the proprietors, Marjorie Riley St. John and Anthony Maughn, for being "fine examples of what it takes to succeed as an entrepreneur in a highly competitive business environment".
The Prime Minister stressed that in an open economy like Barbados, there was only so much that Government could do. "I can assure you that government will create the conditions for business success: but the rest is left to the fledgling entrepreneur," he remarked.
Mr. Thompson pointed out that it was generally accepted that Barbados could not continue to provide secondary and tertiary education that was used simply to obtain employment.
"The dividend that developed countries reap from heavy investment in higher education is the army of wealth-creators that emerge.
"We in Barbados need to expand the entrepreneurial class beyond the small stratum that has traditionally spotted business opportunities and capitalised on them," the Prime Minister contended.
The Edgewater Villas project, which is expected to be completed within 18 months, will contain 31 state-of-the art villas and condominiums. It will also provide employment for approximately 50 persons from Bathsheba and its environs. In addition, the Edgewater Hotel will be completely refurbished, and upgraded to at least four star ranking.