Mon | Jul 15, 2019

'UDC did not let me down' - Seaga proud of 50-year journey

Published:Monday | April 16, 2018 | 12:00 AMBrian Walker/Staff Reporter

The Urban Development Corporation (UDC) is still relevant to infrastructural advancement in contemporary Jamaica as it celebrates 50 years of shaping metropolitan districts. That is the view of Edward Seaga, former prime minister and founder of the UDC.

"The UDC did not let me down as no private investment group at the time would have been able to handle the huge project, and I safely say 50 years onwards that we would be hard-pressed to find such a multidisciplinary cadre of skilled persons to do what the institution is still doing," said Edward Seaga. His remarks were delivered by Dr Damian Graham, general manager, UDC, during an anniversary service yesterday at the Kingston Parish Church.

Seaga added that he is particularly proud of the UDC's work with Dunn's River Falls in St Ann. "This jewel continues to pull millions of tourists to our shores and is equally enjoyed by our residents." Senator Ransford Braham, UDC chairman, asserted that the organisation will not be complacent and it is energised about its future.

"We are, for example, continuing the development of the Montego Bay waterfront through the rehabilitation of the groynes and establishment of the Closed Harbour Beach (Dump Up Beach) Park. We commence this year," noted Braham.

According to the chairman, other plans include upgrading the town of Ocho Rios, St Ann; construction of a Government Oval Campus at National Heroes Park, Kingston, which will include a new parliament; and planning the island's third city.

Anthony Hylton, who represented the leader of the Opposition, lauded the UDC, but said it needs to ramp up efforts to tackle unplanned developments, especially in tourism hotspots, by enforcing regulations.

The corporation was formed to address overpopulation in urban centres in the 1960s, through the implementation of development projects to improve quality of life of Jamaicans.