Cabinet Minister Arden McLean said West Bay will not be ignored by the People’s Progressive Movement government because it did not win a seat in that district during the past elections.
Mr. McLean made the comments at the Cabinet press briefing last Friday in response to a letter to the editor in that day’s Caymanian Compass that suggested West Bayers might have their needs forgotten over the next four years of PPM government.
‘I want to put that writer’s mind to rest,’ Mr. McLean said. ‘We will not neglect West Bay.
‘The fact that the PPM didn’t get a seat in West Bay makes no difference to the PPM or to Arden McLean.
‘I have a job to do and West Bay will not be forgotten.’
One of the letter writer’s main concerns was the traffic problem for those travelling to and from George Town.
Mr. McLean said the government was moving immediately to address that problem.
He pointed out the government had just budgeted $3 million for the extension of the Esterley Tibbetts highway.
‘We hope (the amount budgeted) will take us to the Ritz-Carlton boundary,’ Mr. McLean said.
Last month, Edward Howard, deputy director of the National Roads Authority, said the $3 million would probably only get the road as far as Snug Harbour, far short of the Ritz-Carlton goal.
Mr. McLean, however, remained optimistic the road could be taken to the Ritz-Carlton by the end of next June.
‘We think that is reasonable,’ he said, noting that it doesn’t take long to build the road once it is started.
Mr. McLean said the money needed for the acquisition of the land for roadway was separate from the $3 million budgeted for the road.
The traffic problem on West Bay Road will also be alleviated when the lane re-configuration near the Galleria shopping plaza takes place in the near future, Mr. McLean said.
The minister promised West Bay will get attention in other ways as well.
Mr. McLean said he’s working on a plan to widen Hell Road.
‘I personally went to talk to the gentleman who owns the land needed to widen the road,’ he said.
Other projects Mr. McLean said the government has planned for West Bay include the completion of the boardwalk along Boggy Sand Road, the placement of sidewalks around the Ed Bush Stadium, and the drilling of drain wells on Willie Farrington Drive and near the Ed Bush Stadium to help alleviated flooding problems.