Barbados Improvements Part 1: Bridgetown

Submitted by Freedom Crier

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We all have opinions, I do and so do you but in each person’s opinion there can be some truth, some more than others. I am an older person now so my opinion has a little more seasoning than when I was younger. Please read with a believing ear, doubt is always destructive.

I believe the following can be done which will be a help to Barbados and I am sure you have many other ideas or modifications to add to this. Most of these suggestion are low cost or no cost solutions.

Bridgetown Improvements

  • Board Walk:
  1. Create a boardwalk over the Constitution River from the Charles Duncan O’Neal Bridge to the mini bus stand stopping at the present cross over bridge. The existing reinforced sides can hold a lightweight wooden structure and some type of centre support may be necessary. This board walk will become the main public thoroughfare for the public transport system, allowing all people who use this system to access the buses and the mini buses in a safe manner without blocking or walking on the roads. You would have with this idea reclaimed an area for the people of Barbados in the heart of Bridgetown without depriving anyone of their property. See benefits below.
  2. The main bus stand’s people entrances will now be from the boardwalk, not from Charles Duncan O’Neal Bridge although this one can remain as it would be alongside the new other board walk.
  3. The old market and the bus stand and extra space opposite Starcom Network with the sewage pump station on it should be utilized now for a bigger bus stand.
  4. The old market can have shops of whatever types are deemed necessary. Supermarket, Meat shops, Retail Clothing ETC. Or alternately, as the old market is a shell, tear it down and rework the area as extended Bus parking and boarding, expanding the overly small current bus stand. The area in front of the old Market will be extended parking for buses
  5. Both sides of this long Boardwalk will have stalls for vendors: Local crafts, fruit, confectionaries, ETC, the smaller shops for vendors including small quick service “hand food” stalls. All tourists & all travellers who travel on the buses will have access to these vendors. This will get all the vendors off the streets of Bridgetown or facing the Charles Duncan O’Neal Bridge while giving them a superior access to the traveling public with thousands of commuters daily.
  6. Some type of access to the river for cleaning or other reasons may have to be considered but the persons who did the original pile-driving Job can advise on this.

An excerpt from the Constitution of Barbados…

THE CONSTITUTION OF BARBADOS

CHAPTER III

PROTECTION OF FUNDAMENTAL RIGHTS AND FREEDOMS OF THE INDIVIDUAL

  1. Whereas every person in Barbados is entitled to the Fundamental rights and freedoms of the individual, that is to say, the right, whatever his race, place of origin, political opinions, colour, creed or sex, but subject to respect for the individual. rights and freedoms of others and for the public interest, to each and all of the following, namely(a) life, liberty and security of the person; (6) protection for the privacy of his home and other property and from deprivation of property without compensation; (c) the protection of the law; and (d) freedom of conscience, of expression and of assembly and association, the following provisions of this Chapter shall have effect for the purpose of affording protection to those rights and freedoms subject to such limitations of that protection as are contained in those provisions, being limitations designed to ensure that the enjoyment of the said rights and freedoms by any individual does not prejudice the rights and freedoms of others or the public interest……..

Protection of freedom of conscience.

  1. (1) Except with his own consent, no person shall be hindered in the enjoyment of his freedom of conscience and for the purpose of this section the said freedom includes freedom of thought and of religion, freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others, and both in public and in private, to manifest and propagate his religion or belief in worship, teaching, practice and observance…..
  • Free Speech Area:

Declare Independence Square a free speech area (Similar to Hyde Park in England) with the usual restrictions as to preaching sedition, violence, Etc. but allow no prosecution under libel laws. People may preach, have political meetings, say what they like, (including what some may call hate/offensive speech) creating a vent for their frustrations. Although this is guaranteed under the constitution of Barbados, the laws do not allow anyone to have a contrary opinion. No newspaper is critical of Government or any practice. The consequences are grave if they do. The Nation newspaper used to be that voice but the laws have shut them up. To get a different opinion they must quote different persons’ opinion, never the Nation editors or their reporters or their contributors can offer a dissenting view from the prevailing Politically Correct (PC) opinion. Create an immunity similar to parliament for free speech. Allow no loud speaker systems to be used. This will stop the abuse of the free speech area as it will limit the amount of people speaking at the same time in the park, EG: on a Sunday. This will avoid having loud speakers at the four corners blaring at the same time with different speakers. But all can use broadcast systems EG: FM radio with a restriction as to the decibel level from each personal radio similar to what we witness used at the drive-in Cinema. You will be able to park near the Treasury Building and listen or “tune in” to which speaker you want to hear.

 

Creating a hive of activity in the heart of Bridgetown:

To understand why this is necessary, a person leaving the main bus terminal has to walk through Bridgetown quickly to get to the Cheapside bus terminal. They have now by-passed Bridgetown but if the following were implemented Bridgetown will become vibrant again. If Bridgetown becomes vibrant the Taxes actually collected will go up, the properties will have more value and people will take care of their properties & not allow them to become dilapidated as it looks now in our Capital City.

1        Use the car park behind Chefette Broad Street for mini Buses. Continue using the ally next to Chefette leading to that car park for the Taxis from the present Taxi stand in front of Chefette Broad Street. It would be good and preferable to have the area in front of Chefette Broad Street made into a rest area with seating and a gazebo or alternatively bring back the water fountain that was relocated in front of the public library but keep the new seating. This alley way for the taxies would need to be cleaned up and made to look bright and the traffic pattern would have to be reversed in the ally with the corresponding change at the new mini bus stand.

2        Another two rows of mini buses can be next to KFC & Burger King at the top of Baxter’s Road.

3        The building at the back of Chefette, “Beckwith Mall”, now closed should be purchased, knocked down flat and used for Public Toilets, Offices etc. Or with the increase foot traffic the owners of Beckwith Mall may yet find a new use.

4        Allowing free parking on all government controlled parking areas for persons working in Bridgetown, keeping the nearby street parking for shoppers that Visit Bridgetown. Stop removing car spots from the parking pool in the heart of Bridgetown, keep these for the in & out shopper. People working in Bridgetown tell their Bosses that Bridgetown is too congested so let’s move to out of town areas, the bosses listen incorrectly and now we have a situation that Bridgetown is dying and on its last legs. What the bosses should have perceived is that to park in Bridgetown costs a minimum of $8.00 a day, or $40.00 per work week. That is Gas money for all who have cars. Make the parking free and the cry to move out by all including the mid-level managers would be gone. Keep Bridgetown ALIVE. Bridgetown Drainage is good and it does not flood. The Utilities Companies have agreements to ensure service in the event of a calamity and are restored first to the Port, Bico Cold Storage and Bridgetown, and the main feeds are all underground. The infrastructure in Bridgetown is sound why allow it to be discarded? The sewage system works unlike the same on the south coast.

5        Remove the restriction on businesses from using the alleyways, allowing putting of chairs, side walk cafes, Restaurant Drive Thru, Low level music, Bars, Clubs, small shops Etc. These alleyways are cool no sun , Breezy & Clean (washed each night by the SSA) The restriction that is usually cited is that you have to allow the fire tenders to get into the alleyways BUT no fire tender can fit in any alleyway in Bridgetown so that argument is bogus. Do not allow car parking in the alleyways just allow free access, chairs and tables.

6        Many years ago people were discouraged from living in Bridgetown. So now you have an exodus each day. If this were to change people will be on the streets later into the night thus reducing the sudden outflow from 4:00pm, and creating extended business opportunities and employment for all. Many buildings in Bridgetown have empty floors. These can be used for living apartments, with minor modifications. Businesses will return when there are better opportunities. A sprinkler system in these converted buildings would mitigate any fire risk.

7        The busiest area in Trinidad is Independence Square Port of Spain simply because the mini buses are in the area. We can see and learn, too long we have let Bureaucrats run things and they think like a Bureaucracy. Everything they do turns out wrong. EG: “Put parking wardens in Bridgetown to take the work off of the police”, so if you come to town twice and each time you get reported by the wardens the message is, shop elsewhere not Bridgetown. You are never coming back. Who needs that! The result Bridgetown is dying. And the walk is far to the car park no shuttle not even 1$ paid trolley rides or 2$ trolley rides from the port to town or the $1 trolley ride from the Cheapside bus stand to the Fairchild bus stand. The executives get free parking in the City Mall car park at the expense of the company so they do not feel it hence no need to change and the town is dying for the lack of vision. Allow duty free importation for these few short haul trolleys max 15 passengers for this purpose even if you give the concession to the taxi men association. The island tour & other destinations Taxies can remain at the port.

8        Get rid of the wardens that walk around to REPORT parking infractions, the few that may remain can advise drivers, no parking, stopping etc. if needed, just no confrontations, just keep traffic flowing and the government owned car parks free from would be robbers.

9        When funds are available talk to Kymar Saffery the head of the homeless shelter organisation as to how to remove the homeless beggars from the streets. He may recommend some type of building in the country, with school meals dropping off some meals during school times of the year. (The schools meals program produces thousands of meals a day, these extra meals will not even register). The impressions given to any tourist is that walking through Bridgetown you are hit on by a beggar every 50 steps at least 6 beggars for every trip on Broad street, imagine the impression the tourist get of Barbados, How effective do you think your advertising dollar is now when they board their boat, what message are they giving to others that want to come to Barbados. In Puerto Rico you do not see a beggar in the tourist area and that is like America. They try to protect that industry, in Barbados we want to keep the tourist in the all-inclusive hotels and allow Bridgetown, Taxis, Tour Companies etc. to die. Some Smart Choice. If anybody objects to moving them from Bridgetown invite the concern public who object to invite them at their home where they will be treated properly as recommend by them. 

10    Traffic Relief:

Put the stop lights on blinking. Red on less trafficked lane and orange on main thoroughfares. Do this to stop lights from Worthing right into Bridgetown. Everyone knows there is no traffic when this happens but the bureaucracy at MTW do not think like that, they love their control. They will give a thousand reasons why not and deny their own eyes.

11    The same way that we have a loading area for passengers to go on a Jolly Roger Cruise use comparable loading areas for all tours and boat parking facilities on the opposite side in the Careenage even if at some time the mouth of the Careenage has to be expanded to create a larger safe harbour for more yachts and pleasure craft in the same manner that a safe harbour was created for the fishing boats by the fish market. Secondly some overall plan can be looked at all along the coast going towards the fish market from the present berth for Jolly Roger with an access road through the government car park on the sea side.

Part 2: will deal with other Barbados improvements.

Part 3 will deal with Barbados Agricultural improvements

The Government of Barbados…

 

“Play your Part in the RESCUE< RECOVERY & REBUILDING exercise…Share Your Ideas for a better Barbados” EMAIL.…

Suggestion, Why not share your ideas in the form of Articles even if it is a separate tab on BU for the Betterment of Barbados so more may have the opportunity to See it and participate where the ideas may be discussed and not just go into an email where you do not know where it goes, who is reading it and the Biases they may hold.

Put your ideas in Public view for scrutiny and comment as this one does on BU.

For example if they receive these emails and should they hold certain views they are more than likely to conclude based on their Biases thy may say “we have received 1,542 emails and we have found Three that are credible. Depending e.g. if they are Socialist/ /Capitalist/Crony Capitalist/Marxist/Communist/Dictator Environmentalist / just to name a few.

Because of their Bias the Population of Barbados would never see 1,542 emails. That does not make Sense, let alone being Transparent.

Make these emails Public or even if you say send it to this particular email have them Published on a Website.

If you do not do that you are fooling the people, by wasting their time and energy!

All additional suggestions are welcome all will be treated with respect and considered to be added in the other installments.

Now let’s get cracking.

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95 comments

  • William Skinner

    @ Freedom Crier
    My comment about investment in the Marina and Westmireland was in response to David not anything that you posited.

    Like

  • @William

    Port of Spain is transformed? Led by Manning as prime minister of the public sector? Which buildings along the wharf were allowed to go to ruin?

    Like

  • William Skinner

    David

    Call it the wharf or the Pier Head. All those lovely warehouses and so on were allowed to fall into a state of disrepair. Even the BST former headquarters was becoming an eyesore. I know and you should that the warehouse restaurant was a building that was rescued although that is now in need of a facelift. The reason there is this push now to revitalise Bridgetown is the fact that it was neglected for donkey years.
    Look David I ain’t saying that Port of Spain is Manhattan but I know that a lot of work including the building of hotels was done under Manning’s watch.
    The same way that the Hyatt will be built under Mottley’s watch. You need to resist being the devils advocate and be a bit more serious . We just have a way of not planning anything . Check and see how we remodel the airport three times and refused to include jet bridges.

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  • WOW remember this…Hurricane Janet

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  • Jeff Cumberbatch

    the laws do not allow anyone to have a contrary opinion.
    FC, are you sure of what you are saying? What laws are you referring to?”

    Are they no Liable and Slander Laws in Barbados Dean Cumberbatch?

    Yes, FC, there is the law of Defamation, but it does not prevent one from expressing a contrary opinion. It comes into play only when you cease discussing ideas and start to attack the reputation of an individually imputing some defamatory conduct to him or her. In other words, when you play the man or woman and not the ball!

    Note too, that a “cause of action” would not include persecution for criminal defamation, contrary to what your posted excerpt suggests.

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  • Thank you Dean Cumberbatch may expand later…So will you take up the Challenge and Blaze the Trail as the Person to make it a Reality of a Free Speech area in Errol Barrow Square as you are the Right Person to do it?

    Like

  • TheOGazerts July 22, 2018 7:06 PM

    “Let me add that I find some of the ideas very appealing.
    I like number 5, but I feel the cleaning should be done by property owners.
    Great ideas.”

    TheOGazerts…Thank you for your openness to receive new ideas…That is a very good quality as that is the mechanism by which we learn and grow in our understanding, unlike when we are closed minded nothing filters through by way of Enlightenment.

    Having worked in the City of Bridgetown and having mused on these thoughts for many years these ideas I believe are doable and workable.

    The Business owners in Bridgetown do clean their Premises… In # 5 that you liked, “5 Remove the restriction on businesses from using the alleyways, allowing putting of chairs, side walk cafes, Restaurant Drive Thru, Low level music, Bars, Clubs, small shops Etc. These alleyways are cool no sun , Breezy & Clean (washed each night by the SSA) ” Although the SSA washed down our ally at night we still washed down our area in the morning as the alleys are convenient bathrooms for some. But I think that if they were opened as suggested that would decrease.

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  • Bridgetown Out Door Barber Shop and other Fond Memories

    Image https://i.ytimg.com/vi/EjiAKR_zVKI/maxresdefault.jpg

    Description – 0ld Barbados – Bajan Talk, Part 1 Rhymes of Sorts.

    Video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AYQGdyy_0kU

    Old Barbados: Part 2 – memories of days gone by.

    Video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EjiAKR_zVKI

    Like

  • Found this Interesting Video you may understand what it means to be an Entrepreneur…The Vision Never Ceases and Possibilities are Endless!!

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  • Back in the day pottery would have come by train from St. Andrews packed in boxes and trays of dry sour grass. The forms are still used today: the monkey for storing drinking water and the conaree for storing salted meats.

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  • David thank you for the videos sent ….David July 22, 2018 12:19 PM

    … Viewing …I liked the PM Sense of Urgency to Accomplish the new plans for Town Planning A.S.A.P and not have the same old Dragged out System that caused the ripple effect of the lost of revenue and endless delays of would have been possible only if!…

    Would like to attend the next session, is it this Wednesday coming, where and at what time.?

    Thanks again David

    Like

  • “What do you mean? Public Transportation is just that, Free Parking means for those that has a Vehicle !!”

    So people who own cars are not part of the public?

    “The reason there is this push now to revitalise Bridgetown is the fact that it was neglected for donkey years.”

    There was a push to renew Bridgetown since the 1990s under Owen; hence the construction of London Bourne, the Boardwalk, repair of the swing bridge, greening of the lower green bus stand, Pierhead redevelopment initiative, constitution river dredging and the greening of independence square. This was long before the Hyatt, the only hotel built in Port of Spain under Manning, opened in 2009.

    “How come they had a vision for a marina and golf courses at Westmoreland but aint put one penny in Bridgetown ?”

    Because they recognised the shift in economic and social activity coupled with the burgeoning heights, terraces and gardens, car ownership and the opportunities opened up by the ABC highway. Cities “die” due to a number of factors, their rejuvenation must be built on what makes them unique now and into the future, not yesterday.

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  • A little truth never hurt anyone yet..

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  • If Only We Would Listen!

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  • Barbados Museum & Historical Society.
    Introduction of Piped Water to Bridgetown

    On March 29, 1861, piped water was introduced into the city of Bridgetown. To signal this momentous event, the tap located on the pedestal of Nelson’s Statue was the first to be opened to allow the fresh water to flow. A joint stock company trading as “The Bridgetown Waterworks Company” was formed in 1857 with a guaranteed government subsidy of £5,000 a year to supply the city with half a million gallons of pure water daily.

    Water was supplied from springs at Newcastle, St. John via pipes laid in December of 1860 in the principal streets of the City. The introduction of this supply was intended for fires only; but at the beginning of May, the Waterworks Company published the rates at which it was prepared to supply water to private premises within the City limits, and by October 1861 the Waterworks Company had laid down 490 hydrants and 105 standpipes throughout Bridgetown. This was possibly as a response to the 1854 cholera epidemic and the recurring Bridgetown fires of the 19th century.

    A few months after the introduction of piped water to the City, an editorial in the “The Barbadian” newspaper suggested that a fountain “with some pretensions of elegance” should be erected in a central spot for use by the public. On November 10, 1862 a subscription was opened under the auspices of the Governor to raise between £150 and £200 for its erection. On March 1, 1865 a committee was established and Thomas C. Marshall, Superintendent of Public Works, volunteered to supervise the erection of the fountain. The Waterworks Company agreed to supply the 2,000 gallons of water an hour required to operate the fountain from 8:00 a.m. until dusk. On April 26, an Act was passed to appropriate a portion on land in Trafalgar Square to site the fountain which arrived in Barbados on the ship “Sylph.” Henry Emptage, the sole tenderer, was awarded the contract to erect the fountain which was estimated to cost £300.

    To support the 1 ¾ ton fountain, a foundation was constructed comprising a circular block of masonry, supported by 44 hard wood piles which were driven 10 feet into the ground. A basin, 40 feet in diameter and three feet above ground level, was placed at the base of the fountain to receive the water. The basin was designed by the Superintendent of Public Works and made from local limestone.

    On July 17, 1865, the fountain was formally inaugurated by the acting Governor Major Robert M. Mundy. The occasion, which attracted a large crowd, was marked by an artillery salute, the ringing of the bells of St. Michael’s Cathedral and a guard of honour.

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  • Swan Street, Brigdetown, Barbados

    Back in 1845, an enormous fire ravaged Mr. Lobo’s property at No. 20 Swan Street. Numerous houses and acres of Lower Bridgetown were burnt, which subsequently became aptly known as Burnt District.

    Two theories exists with regards to the genesis of the name Swan Street. One theory suggests an inn by the name of ‘The Swan’ while the other theory points to the street being named after Captain Swann, a surveyor.

    “I ask a Bajan student about Swan Street, also known as “Jew Street” because of the historical settlement of Jewish merchants there. Puzzled, she suggests that perhaps I have the wrong street? Perhaps I mean Tudor Street? She associates Swan Street with Syrians, Chinese, but not Jews. Her response brings to mind a line from St. Lucian poet Derek Walcott’s Nobel speech about “that Sephardic Jewish synagogue that was once on Something Street.”

    Like

  • Looks like a Sunday either early morning or late afternoon…

    What Direction would you say this Image of Swan Street was Looking Towards, East or West?

    I feel it is looking east and the buildings on the left is where Sewing World is Presently and the ally on the right takes you to the T Junction by the Street that is the Back of Cave Shepherd?

    What year would you think this image Portrays?

    Swan Street, Bridgetown, Barbados

    Like

  • Pingback: Barbados Improvements Part 2: Thoughts and Ideas | Barbados Underground

  • Pingback: Barbados Improvements Part 3: Agriculture | Barbados Underground

  • Pingback: Barbados Improvements Part 4: Looking Forward | Barbados Underground

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