Sat | Oct 23, 2021

Councillor regrets supporting hotel construction in his division

Published:Monday | September 13, 2021 | 12:05 AMBryan Miller/Gleaner Writer

Councillor Marvin Sewell of the Green Island division in the Hanover Municipal Corporation (HMC), says he regrets supporting the approval for the construction of the Princess Hotel, which is to be located in Green Island.

The councillor’s regret is fuelled by the major inconvenience caused by the truckers being used to do the dumping of the mangroves for the construction of the hotel, which is damaging the roads and creating a constant dust nuisance.

The truckers are being used to transport marl from Fish River, an area located on the Hanover-Westmoreland border, which is several miles from the proposed construction site.

While environmentalists have long been voicing concerns about the potential damage the development of the 186-acre seafront property could cause to mangroves and coral reefs, some councillors had supported the project. However, Sewell is now facing the wrath of residents in his division on account of the challenges they are now facing.

RESIDENTS FED UP

“The trucks[(transporting the marl] drive carelessly on the road, they cause a lot of accidents in that space. The residents are fed up, they are coming to me daily asking what is going to be done about the truckers, as they have no regard for anyone or anything,” Sewell told The Gleaner.

Sewell said he lodged a complaint about the truckers at the HMC monthly meeting in July, while he requested that a meeting be held with the developers of the 2,000-room hotel to address the concerns of the residents.

“I would like the National Works Agency, the National Water Commission, and the member of parliament for Hanover Western, Tamika Davis, to be in on the meeting with the developers when it is called,” said Sewell.

“Honestly, is a mistake I made to support the development of this hotel. If I had really known that the residents of Green Island were going to suffer so much, I would not have supported it, and I am speaking from my heart” said Sewell.

“The way I feel right now, (it) is like I am representing the people with my hands tied; remember that I live there, so I face the questions daily,” added Sewell.

The councillor said that before the development started, the road network from Silver Spring, where the quarries are located, to Green Island was in an excellent condition, but now it is totally destroyed. He also named the Santoy, Winchester, Salt Spring, Log Wood and Wharf road thoroughfares as being badly in need of repairs, because of the trucking of the marl along these roadways.