Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, Daryl Vaz, has announced the Enterprise Team that will lead the Bernard Lodge Master Plan.
Minister Vaz named the team during the Post Cabinet Press Briefing on Wednesday, December 5, at Jamaica House.
Members are: Mr Joseph Shoucair, (Chairman) Attorney- at- Law and Chairman of SCJ Holdings Limited; Martin Addington, Town Planner; Mr Desmond Young, Civil Engineer; Mr Wayne Straughn, Chartered Accountant; Mr Maurice Jones, Civil Engineer
The Enterprise Team, which has been working since earlier this year, will give oversight to the implementation of the Cabinet’s decision, including the operationalisation of the Master Plan and ensuring that the activities undertaken comply with the policy direction of the Government of Jamaica.
The Master Plan consists of 4677 Acres with several components namely; agriculture, detached housing units, townhouses, mixed-use utilities, commercial, light industrial, open space, and social services.
“The infrastructure is not only about what is required for the new Bernard Lodge Master Plan it is going take into consideration the many legacy issues in terms of infrastructure which have faced the people of Portmore and the surrounding communities…It will also deal with the legacy issues in relation to drainage, water, sewage and roads”, explained Minister Vaz.
The Master Plan will create and sustain a vibrant resilient community while tackling the challenges of affordable housing, transportation access to jobs and services.
Minister Vaz added that the project “will be funded in conjunction with state agencies and their budgetary allocations, going forward. Special presentation for this particular project will be made through the various ministries. It will be funded with the help of the National Housing Trust… and from part proceeds of the sales of the land that will be divested by Government as well as an Infrastructure Cess”.
Minister Vaz further stated that a new water source has been identified for the project.
“We are not using any of the existing water supplies to provide water for the new Master Plan. None of them within Portmore. We are using an entirely new source which will be the Rio Cobre”, he confirmed.
The National Water Commission will commence the construction of a second treatment facility on the Rio Cobre. It will produce 15 Million Gallons of potable water on a daily basis.
The Master Plan also addresses issues pertaining to sewage, drainage, waste management and aquifer protection.