Sat | Nov 25, 2017

Pedestrianisation of King Street a big part of downtown Kingston redevelopment

Published:Monday | September 4, 2017 | 12:00 AMPaul Clarke
Williams

Long-held ambitions to transform downtown Kingston appear to be finally taking off, with the Kingston and St Andrew Municipal Corporation leading the effort through plans to pedestrianise King Street.

"The extensive work on the St William Grant Park is part of efforts to transform Parade, and the pedestrianisation of King Street is a vital piece of the effort, as the objective is to make Kingston a destination for visitors, both locals and foreigners alike," Kingston Mayor Delroy Williams told The Gleaner yesterday.

Pedestrianisation of King Street, Williams said, will make the area a major recreation and business section of the city, which will breathe much-needed life into its development.

The project is expected to cost millions of dollars, but the mayor said he is not daunted, as funding will be found to execute the development plans, once the designs are settled upon.

Under the plan, the JUTC bus bays will be no more. These will be replaced with benches and trees to complement the St William Grant Park.

In addition, the sidewalks along King Street will be replaced with special tiles and street lighting to bring the area in line with what the municipality's vision for that section of downtown Kingston is.

"We will be looking to remove the sidewalks and put in special, durable tiles and then put in lighting for aesthetics and trees, as well as seating. The JUTC bus bays will be ripped up and removed," the mayor said.

 

STICKY ISSUE OF THE HOMELESS

 

He pointed out that the sticky issue of homeless people will also be addressed, while security concerns will be taken into account, with the option of having municipal police given special training and even be given district constable powers.

The mayor recently tweeted his pleasure after the St William Grant Park fountain began pumping again for the first time in a decade.

Restorative work has been done on the park's restrooms, with walkways constructed to accommodate the expected use, and several garbage receptacles installed. A kids' zone has also been earmarked.

paul.clarke@gleanerjm.com