Hearing for new resort draws residents

Island gift shop owner Susan Stair and former Sen. Robert O’Connor Jr. spoke in favor of approving plans for the Pond Bay resort project at Chocolate Hole during a Coastal Zone Management hearing.

O’Connor said that when plans were proposed for the Westin,
residents expressed concerns. "And this has been one of the best things
for St. John," he said.

Stair added, "This piece of property was
intended to be a resort, and most of the people who bought property
knew it was going to be a resort," the St. John Source reported.

However, Lisa Durgin, a villa home manager, opposed the Pond Bay project. She
said there is no need for more hotel rooms, since the island has more than 500
rental villas.


St. John does have parking and infrastructure problems that will be worsened by the
project, she added. "I ask you to protect the island from the rape and
pillage that has been allowed to happen in the last four and a half
years," Durgin added.

The developers for the project told CZM,
"We’re ready to go."  The project will include at least 60
apartment/condos, a restaurant, spa/.fitness center, several tennis courts and
pools.

2 thoughts on “Hearing for new resort draws residents”

  1. I’ve been reading with amusement all the very negative comments being made about Sirenusa, Pond Bay, Grande Bay, etc. complaining about as Lisa Durgin puts it “the rape and pillage” of the island. Its the “I got mine, so let’s keep everyone else out mentality.” Ms. Durgin is a villa home manager, so from my view it certainly seems she is really just interested in keeping her business booming by shutting out competitors. Let’s remind her that the traffic and other “problems” are caused by her customers, too. I for one think Sirenusa and Pond Bay will be high-quality developments that will improve St. John and offer other attractive lodging alternatives. After all, St. John is not a deserted, unchartered island paradise as some whimsical people would like to believe. It will be developed and the focus should be on encouraging good developments and sound planning. All the whining accomplishes nothing. Rob Pfriender
    President, Allied International Development, Ltd., Long Island, New York

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