Friday 18 October, 2019

Kingston poised to become a smart, resilient city - Holness

Prime Minister Andrew Holness.

Prime Minister Andrew Holness.

Kingston is poised to become a smart, resilient city, with the current infrastructural development taking place there, says Prime Minister Andrew Holness.

The hope is to make Kingston the main point in the Caribbean, Holness told hundreds gathered at the Jamaica Pegasus on Sunday for the opening ceremony of the 8th Biennial Jamaica Diaspora Conference.

“We want to genuinely make Kingston, not just the capital of Jamaica, but the centre of trade, commerce and arts and culture and entertainment in the Caribbean,” Holness said. 

Making the capital city a world-class infrastructure, however, requires improvements to its road, water and sewage network, Holness noted. 

“The infrastructure (being built) will be able to withstand shocks. Those that are unforeseen and those for which we can have some measure of expectation. We are not just putting down roads, we are putting down resilient roads that can withstand hurricanes and floods.”

Work is also being done to lay the necessary infrastructure for telecommunications, making Kingston “smart”, Holness said. 

The prime minister also shared his vision to see Kingston re-emerge as a tourist destination. 

“We intend to make Kingston again once more, a destination for people to visit, not necessarily for an all-inclusive resort destination, but for people to come and genuinely experience the true culture of Jamaica. We have so much to offer.”

Of the estimated one million Jamaicans living in the United States, he is hoping that at least 30,000 visits Kingston annually and experience places like the National Gallery, Institute of Jamaica, Bob Marley Museum and Blue Mountain, known for its premium coffee. 

“There is so much to do around Kingston, but we have hidden the gems that are here and now it is time for us to build the infrastructure that will expose them,” he said.

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