Falmouth Wharf construction begins

KINGSTON, Jamaica – Preliminary work on the long-awaited Falmouth Wharf has finally started, around five years after the proposed construction was announced by then Prime Minister P.J. Patterson.

The demolition of some structures and removal of debris began in earnest last week and the construction of a new fisherman’s beach to facilitate the relocation of the old one has also started in the vicinity of the Uriah Rowe Park.

“This initial work will take about two weeks, after which the construction will start and must be concluded in June 2010 when the Genesis on the Sea, the largest cruise ship will berth,” said member of parliament for North Trelawny, Dr Patrick Harris.

“It is going to cost about US$200 million (more than J$17 billion) but this is not going to include the buildings on the waterfront as the land is going to be leased to investors who will construct support structures, which is a way to bring down the direct cost by sharing it with private investors.”

He stressed that while “the design has changed, the substance and magnitude of the project is still the same”.

Meanwhile, residents of Falmouth and Trelawny, in general, are breathing a sigh of relief as, although the wharf had long been announced, its failure to start, coupled with the international financial climate, was causing concerns.