Karin Hay, the mastermind behind 58HWTR tech campus
Celebrated Jamaican architect Karin Hay, the creative genius behind the 58HWTR tech campus, is upbeat as it nears the completion of what is poised to become the largest business process outsourcing (BPO) facility in the English-speaking Caribbean.
58HWTR, the name of which stems from its location at 58 Half-Way Tree Road in St Andrew, is operated by Stanley Motta Ltd, a subsidiary of the Musson Group of Companies, and will fall under the leadership of Melanie Subratie, who will chair the board of directors.
Hay is no stranger to the commercial architecture, or even designing for the specific needs of the BPO industry, as she was instrumental in the fit-out of several similar facilities islandwide.
She has also collaborated on several other celebrated local projects, including the design of the Basic Medical Sciences Complex at the University of the West Indies.
Hay became a registered architect in 1997 and worked for the architecture firm Harold Morrison + Robert Woodstock Associates before starting an independent practice in 2006.
She was educated at the Architectural Association School of Architecture in London, where she is also registered to practise, and has worked on prominent projects such as the restoration of the former Carreras Cigarette Factory in central London, which received a Civic Trust Award in 2000.
58HWTR is Hay's largest project to date and perhaps the one for which she will be best recognised locally.
The development is the only integrated tech campus in Jamaica. It will include 230,000 square feet of office space rented predominantly to BPO entities along with associated services, including a daycare, financial services, healthcare, and a range of food and beverage options.
The design's focal point is the Richmond Great House, offering a unique mix of modern and colonial style architecture.
"Working on this project has been a truly remarkable experience. There is also an added feeling of satisfaction knowing that my work will help to facilitate jobs for Jamaicans and make a significant contribution to the country's development," said Hay.
"I am deeply honoured that the Stanley Motta team chose me to bring their vision to light, and I hope those who work in and visit the development will thoroughly enjoy my creative direction," added Hay.
58HWTR, an investment of more than US$30 million, is expected to be completed next month, creating some 5,000 jobs.