Wed | Aug 23, 2017

Sitting idly in Fern Gully

Published:Monday | February 27, 2017 | 2:00 AMCarl Gilchrist
A section of Fern Gully in St Ann.
Craftsman Michael Jones exhibits one of his pieces in Fern Gully.
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The multimillion-dollar rehabilitation work undertaken by the National Works Agency (NWA) in Fern Gully, St Ann, ending in 2014, where a section of the roadway in the tourist attraction was concreted, seems to be paying dividends.

After three years, the concrete road remains in good condition, with no obvious signs of deterioration.

Several abrasions have developed in the asphalted section, however, and could deteriorate rapidly if not addressed soon.

The markings along the road surface have also deteriorated, while trucks, which are prohibited from using the roadway, continue to flout the law and use the road.

The main dissatisfaction associated with the popular tourist attraction continues to come from craft traders, who conduct business in and around the area.

 

WAITING IN VAIN

 

On a recent Wednesday, with two cruise ships in the Ocho Rios port, vendors sat for hours, waiting in vain for tourists to support their business.

"I don't even mek a dollar since the year start," said disgruntled craftsman Michael Jones.

"We in Fern Gully, and we understand Fern Gully is a tourist attraction, and when we display our work so tourists can see the beauty and creativity of our hands in Jamaica, nobody stops [to look at what we are offering]; nobody look at us. If we try to go to the bus, them drive off, so we don't understand what's going on."