Today’s Editorial for July 31: Parking, flooding a problem

It is good to hear the government is now thinking about what it will do to solve two pressing problems on Grand Cayman: parking in George Town and flooding.

Anyone who has tried to find free parking in George Town this year knows it can be a very frustrating experience. Some paid parking does exist at the Piccadilly garage and at Bayshore Mall, but depending on where a person is going in town, it could make for a rather lengthy walk through streets crowded with cruise passengers. And at this hot and humid time of the year, even short walks can be uncomfortable in dress clothes.

The parking problem has become even worse over the course of the year as some of the free spots in town have been removed as part of the effort to beautify George Town with planters along the streets and paving stones near the Town Hall.

Now the government is trying to decide what to do with the Tower Building site. Creating more parking or creating a green space are two of the choices they have mentioned.

We applaud efforts to make George Town more attractive, but people really need a place to park in town. Ideas that people will ‘park and ride’ into town from a place outside of town are very foreign to Cayman and would be very risky for any public sector entity. In the end, the parking problem will fall to government to resolve and we can only hope it truly intends to address the matter soon.

Flooding is also a major problem on certain roads – and housing areas – in and around George Town. In some cases, it is road building itself that has caused flooding of surrounding areas. In other cases, it has been the development of properties near a road that causes the flooding.

Since we have a rainy season in Grand Cayman and we are subject to tropical storm systems, we must assume we will get large rainfalls at least a few times a year. Road and home flooding create very serious problems that must be addressed for the sake safety.

The government must address the problems – either through culvert systems or by drilling drain wells – to help alleviate the hazards.

It’s all fine to build new office accommodations, new schools and new roads, but if people have to deal with flooded homes, flooded neighbourhood roads and no parking in George Town, all those other new things might not be appreciated as much as they should be.

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