I, amongst many, am temporarily breathing a sigh of relief to have a bit more time to help ease the anxiety of watching pristine reefs that hold unimaginable marine wildlife, get annihilated. We can’t bear the thought of this happening.

I suggest government officials snorkel or dive these reefs before making these decisions.

I am not a native Caymanian. I am speaking for my family of five who have invested 10 years of our one big vacation a year in Grand Cayman. We have daydreamed of one day affording a place here to have as our own.

We are nature lovers, sun worshippers and foodies. We are driven to this island of paradise by nostalgia and pure love every summer.

We have raised our children there, our youngest now 13, has known this island since she was 3. It’s our happy place.

After leaving this past June, we chatted with a few friends about the new port, the increasing traffic jams, the high-rises and the new buildings being built that look out of place on Seven Mile Beach.

The new port is our biggest concern and a disaster we are hoping is avoided. The expanded port may line pockets, but it will be a disaster for the island long term.

More people equals more problems with space. Grand Cayman is not a big island. The island will start to deteriorate, if it hasn’t already begun to do so.

I see by the thousands of signatures, the people of Grand Cayman feel the island is worth saving as well. Will the government listen to their voices, or will the sound of money drown them out?

So much is at stake here. Not only will the marine life and environment be jeopardised, but what was once a peaceful and magical island has become overcrowded with tourists and cars.

I’ve never seen an island with a skyline before, yet this one is growing one at an alarming pace. Vacationers come to Grand Cayman looking to escape the city and what comes with it, but the island is slowly turning into the same environment they wish to escape from.

Europe is experiencing over-tourism, is this the fate of Grand Cayman as well? This little magical place, with the friendly, smiling residents is fading. It seems as if the government is determined to create something that simply doesn’t make sense to the people who love the island for what it already is.

It’s heartbreaking to see the litter, the traffic, and the number of cruisers that stop just to say they’ve been.

Why is so much being sacrificed for the people who come off the ships for a mere few hours out of the day? What about the voice of the people who have made the island their second home? I know many families who visit every year, and the amount of money invested into their vacations is staggering.

We just celebrated our 100th night on the island in June, (total is now 113) and have over the years spent so much more than the cruiser coming to port for one single day. We get to experience and love the island’s restaurants, the attractions, the tours, and explore all corners of the island every chance we get.

For a family of five, it is extremely expensive, but we feel worth every cent to be able to experience the beauty of Grand Cayman. How long will it last?

We are saddened at the rapid growth and negligent decisions being made. I am cheering for the proud people of Grand Cayman to stand strong, they have so much worth fighting for.

Jennifer Arney,
Chicago, USA