In T&T: Ariapita Avenue to be ‘tourist resort.’ Cabinet okays $multi-million plan…

11 May 2012


Ariapita to become a full-fledged boardwalk/strip? Let’s see what ¬†$40mm gets us.

A multi-million dollar plan was approved by Cabinet yesterday to turn certain areas across the country, including Ariapita Avenue in Port of Spain and the Penal/Debe doubles area into “tourist resorts”, Tourism Minister Rupert Griffith said yesterday.

Over $40 million will be spent on refurbishment and infrastructure works.

This includes $13 million to transform Ariapita Avenue.

Speaking at the post-Cabinet news conference at the Prime Minister’s Office, St Clair, Griffith said Cabinet approved funds for works which will begin this year and continue into 2013.

He said subject to consultation with the relevant stakeholders, money will be spent to transform the Avenue by planting trees, installing new signage, construction of information kiosks and food courts.

With respect to Penal/Debe, Griffith said new facilities will be constructed for the vendors who will all be accommodated.

In addition, Griffith said some $1.9 million will be spent in establishing an Amerindian Village on the Blanchisseuse Road on 25 acres of land.

He said the Santa Rosa Carib community has already submitted designs and consultations were completed.

Griffith said $5 million will be spent to upgrade Las Cuevas beach to include full lifeguard services with the aim to achieve “blue flag status” so the beach is designated safe for swimming.

Another $5 million will be spent to upgrade Vessigny beach facility and a further $1.5 million to lift standards at Los Iros, Quinam Beach and Columbus Bay.

Griffith said other sites and attractions will also be upgraded such as Knolly’s Tunnel at Tabaquite where $5 million will be spent.

He said the tunnel will be opened to accommodate visitors.

The Indo Caribbean Museum and the Temple in the Sea will also receive a $4 million injection to have those attractions upgraded.

The Brian Lara Promenade and the Botanical Gardens will also receive attention as some $1.5 million will be spent on attending these sites.

There will also be a project to enhance the La Brea Pitch Lake and another $1.25 million will be spent on tourism and safety projects.

While Griffith spoke about Government’s plans to boost local tourism, Trade Minister Stephen Cadiz spoke about attracting business to the country with the Caribbean Investment Forum (CIF) starting May 14 and the Trade and Investment Convention carded for May 16, 17 and 18.

Cadiz said some 500 people have already registered for the CIF, including 200 foreign attendees.

He said the CIF will feature 40 speakers including Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar and Panama’s President Ricardo Martinelli.

Cadiz said a number of topics will be discussed such as the opportunities arising from the widening of the Panama Canal.

He said the amount of freight coming through this region will be doubled and he pointed out that there will be many benefits to this country.

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