Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley shares the Government’s vision for the new master plan to revitalise capital city, Port of Spain. (Image courtesy Office of the Prime Minister)
SHARLENE RAMPERSAD

The People’s National Movement (PNM) Government is planning to revitalize the city of Port of Spain with a master plan they hope will bring back life to the capital.

The masterplan was unveiled on Monday morning at a “Spotlight on Urban Development” presentation at the Hyatt Regency Hotel.

Delivering the feature address, Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley admitted that previous administrations had promised to revitalise the city in the past. This current plan is the 17th this country has seen.

Rowley said although the government may not have the funding to complete the project, there are other options such as public/private sector partnerships.

He said there is significant interest from both local and international private sector investors in the city’s development.

Short term goals of the masterplan include cleaning the city, increasing the presence of police, removing the homeless from the streets and improving lighting.

Other goals include the Memorial Park Plaza development, the Salvatori Site and the creation of a green space at the Foreshore.

Highlights from the PM’s Speech

The Master Plan for the Revitalisation of Port of Spain will identify public and private sector investment projects that focus on promoting, residential, tourism, entertainment, recreational, commercial, educational and cultural activities.

In addition, focus will be placed on the necessary infrastructure, transportation networks and other services which are desirable to ensure success of the Revitalization of Port of Spain.

The objective of today’s Spotlight on Urban Development is to engage active dialogue with all major stakeholders, which include Government Departments, Merchants/ Business leaders, Business Chambers, Academia, NGOs and most importantly, the resident and visitor population, to solicit feedback on the Master Plan for the city of Port of Spain.

The master plan identified the following catalyst projects to be implemented via Public-Private Partnerships (PPP) for the revitalisation efforts:

(i) Memorial Plaza Development Development of the UDeCOTT-owned property located at Keate Street and south of Memorial Block to house a Mixed-Use Complex inclusive of residential, commercial, office, parking and recreational spaces

(ii) Development of the Salvatori Site

(iii) Piccadilly Street Development This project is before the Cabinet for approval for UDeCOTT to proceed with an RFP and determination of the funding source

(iv) PowerGen Site Development Development of the stated-owned, former site of the Power Generation Company located at Wrightson Road

(v) City Gate Development A concept is to be developed for the revitalization of City Gate

(vi) Foreshore Green space This project would include the expansion of green areas involving land reclamation at the Foreshore at Mucurapo.