Major artisan village for Hampden, Trelawny
Two public bodies are spending US$5.7 million (J$730 million) over the next 12 months to build out 1.6 hectares (four acres) of land into a major artisan village and tourist attraction at the Hampden Wharf in Falmouth, Trelawny.
Minister of Tourism Edmund Bartlett and officials from the Port Authority of Jamaica and the Tourism Enhancement Fund broke ground on Friday for the multimillion-dollar project.
"The US$5.7 million that we are putting for this particular arrangement is in the context of the broader development, as it is a narrow arrangement of making sure that the little people of Falmouth such as the artisans and the craftsmen have a space," said Bartlett during his address.
The area will be converted into an 18th-century wharf environment equipped with 47 shops, five restaurants and bars, 12 mini stalls and 18 artisan shops that will form an arcade.
An additional 12 major shops will also be built for athletes, as well as facilities for rum tasting, cigars, clothing and a children's play area.
"What we will have is a confluence of the Jamaican experience that the visitors will know is really authentic and creative. That is the type of presentation we have to make to enable Falmouth to be a special place of revisits," Bartlett stated.
"The whole objective is to make sure that at every step of the way, the quality of the Jamaican experience that we market and set in collaboration with our friends and partners from the Port Authority is never questioned or is second guessed," he added.
The Gleaner understands that artisan villages are to be established in Ocho Rios, Montego Bay, Negril and Port Antonio in short order.