Work is about to start on a new $10 million dollar shopping centre in Savannah.
And the project, at the junction of Shamrock Drive and Hirst Road, has the full backing of the residents’ development committee.
Heritage Holdings, a subsidiary of Invicta Construction Ltd, run by John D Burke and his sons Troy and Craig, are the developers behind the Countryside Shopping Village, which has received planning permission from the Government for the first phase of development.
That will include an 11,000 square foot grocery store – which is about the same size as the Hurley’s store at Eden Centre – a Subways food outlet and a whole range of other shops, possibly including a pharmacy, tape outlet, hair salon, clothing stores, a hardware shop, restaurant, bank, CD or music shop and a telephone outlet.
There are also plans to have a post office in phase two of the development, which is still awaiting planning approval.
A post office was planned close to the primary school, but after being approached by Heritage, the idea to switch to the Countryside complex met with initial approval after it was explained this would alleviate traffic and entry problems.
‘The whole idea of the complex is to help reduce the amount of traffic travelling into George Town,’ said Craig Burke.
‘The area around Shamrock Drive and Hirst Road has been in need of such a facility for some time.
‘There is nothing much for shoppers past Grand Harbour. The new shopping area at Savannah would not only create around 140 jobs, but would also cut down on the amount of people and traffic going into George Town to shop, so easing traffic congestion in the town centre.’
Heather Bodden, chairman of the Savannah/Newlands Community Development Action Committee, is for the project.
‘As long as it fits in with the general clean-up and landscaping that is being done in the area I feel very positive about the project.
‘We are a growing community and we realise it is part of the progress we see all around us,’ she said. ‘It will also be a great convenience for people in the area who find travelling into George Town to do their shopping a daily hassle.
‘There have been issues over the past year but it is going through now and we have to accept it as long as it fits in with everything else we are doing to make the environment pleasant in that area.
‘We have spoken with Mr John Burke and I am sure his company will do everything they can to comply with our wishes.
‘As long as everything is done in good taste I am sure it will be well accepted,’ she said.
Work has already begun on clearing the six-acre site prior to the start of construction although no opening date for the complex is available.
The Burke family has been involved in many projects over the years in Cayman and more recently completed The Shores private housing development in West Bay and the Centennial Towers complex at the West Bay Four Ways crossroads.