The local Pentecostal church recently received planning approval to build a $1.73 million church in West Bay in Grand Cayman.
The Central Planning Authority had originally given the United Pentecostal Church permission in 2007 to construct a smaller building on the same site on Capts Joe and Osbert Road near the intersection with Birch Tree Hill Road.
During its 16 July meeting, the church successfully applied to build a 17,346-square-foot church building with office space on a 2.79-acre parcel of land. In 2007, the church had received approval for a 13,861-square-foot structure, carrying an estimated cost of $1 million.
In its analysis of the latest application, the Planning Department noted that the area is zoned high-density residential, where churches are “not inherently allowed”. However, according to the minutes of the meeting, the department noted, “The CPA previously approved an application for a 13,861 sq. ft. church on this site, therefore it has already been established that the proposed use is suitable.”
The church building is the fourth-largest project approved by the authority this year, according to estimated cost, and is the third-largest project approved this year, according to building area.
During the same July meeting, the authority approved an application from Heritage Holdings Ltd. for a 6,250-square-foot commercial warehouse, and the storage of seven shipping containers, on Kingbird Drive in George Town in Industrial Park. According to meeting minutes, the building will be located on a roughly 0.62-acre plot of vacant land and will cost about $750,000.
Heritage Holdings is a real estate development and investment company, with projects including Countryside Shopping Village, Centennial Towers, Universal Warehouse Park and Kingbird Warehouse Park, which is near the company’s newest proposed warehouse.
Also during the meeting, the authority approved an application from Stephen Wright for a single-storey commercial retail building off Eastern Avenue, next to the old ShirReynolds nightclub and restaurant, which closed in summer 2011.
According to meeting minutes, the 1,300-square-foot building on Harper Close will be located on a 0.1-acre site occupied by a house and will cost about $157,000.
Signs of things to come
The authority heard a pair of low-dollar applications for signs that could portend high-profile projects.
The Jacques Scott Group was granted permission to put up an $800 double-sided sign, about 6 feet in height, to advertise a major commercial development off West Bay Road, near Foster’s Food Fair IGA and Sundial Condominiums. According to planning records from 2011, the company intends to build a two-storey, 10,600-square-foot commercial building, with an estimated price tag in the neighbourhood of $2 million.
In 2009, Cayman National Bank had received permission from the authority to construct a three-storey building on the same site.
During the 16 July meeting, the authority did not grant approval just yet to the For Cayman Investment Alliance to put up a large banner sign on the fence between the George Town landfill and the Esterley Tibbetts Highway. The proposed 8-feet-high sign would run 1,252 linear feet and cost about $2,000.
According to meeting minutes, the Planning Department questioned the size and suitability of the proposal: “billboards signage is prohibited and it detracts from the character of its surroundings. Nor is the sign affiliated with any particular development”.
The department recommended, “The authority should consider if this application were to be approved, that a precedent would be set to allow for signage on any road frontage fences and walls.”
The authority determined to adjourn the application and invite the applicant to appear before the authority to discuss concerns with the application.