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EDITORIAL: Civic duty to keep City green areas clean


SHERRYLYN CLARKE, [email protected]

EDITORIAL: Civic duty to keep City green areas clean

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THE PRAISE HEAPED on the two Bridgetown enhancement projects officially opened last Saturday is most deserving.
The Constitution River redevelopment and the Church Village Green initiatives have done much to lift not only the natural environment but make the areas more picturesque. We all know our capital City needs further beautification and rehabilitation.
Having spent millions to bring these two projects to fruition and given what they have done to the aesthetics of Bridgetown, the challenge is to ensure they are properly maintained and fully utilised.
While Government will be responsible for the general upkeep of the area, it behoves every Barbadian to ensure there is neither vandalism nor indiscriminate littering. They belong to all of us and must be treasured in an effort to help secure a better society for generations to come.
This is even more important given the current economic stagnation which makes it a challenge to decide how to invest the state’s limited funds strategically.
We expect the river project should bring benefits in varied ways. Hopefully, it will alleviate flooding in that part of Bridgetown while it should also become a sanctuary for birds and a gathering point for avid bird watchers. Both the Constitution River and Church Village Green projects can also generate new business opportunities, create jobs and also provide a stimulus for tourism.
However, Government must continue the wider Bridgetown revitalisation initiative. Of immediate note is Queen’s Park and all therein, including Queen’s Park House, Daphne Joseph-Hackett Theatre, The Stables and the bandstand. Then there is the old Empire Theatre and the Public Library, all national treasures which have been reduced to eyesores.
An urgent decision must also be made as to what will be done to those areas on either side the Constitution River; that running along the Fairchild Street bus terminal as well as what has become known as the River ZR van stand. Left as they are, these areas with their many unsightly shanties can easily become a problem.
While the private sector has a role to play, Government as the owner of the aforementioned properties must restore those which can enhance the beauty of Bridgetown. Where new ones need to be built, a joint public-private sector approach ought to be considered.
We would also urge that the enhancement of Bridgetown be not limited to the historic buildings or creation of various oases. It must tackle depressed residential districts. They cry out for urgent attention.
Even against the backdrop of Government’s withdrawal of an Inter-American Development Bank multimillion-dollar loan for an inner-city housing upgrade, action must be taken. Failure to do so will render meaningless the efforts to revitalise The City.

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