New Gas Station Prompts Land Dispute

New South Shore Gas Station - August 2013 File Photo
New South Shore Gas Station – August 2013 File Photo

Earlier this month, we posted a picture of two recently installed gas pumps over at the new gas station which is being built near the Westin. The image led us to believe that the gas station would open sooner than later. Well, after reading an article in the St. John Tradewinds yesterday, we’re thinking quite the opposite.

Check it out:

(We bolded the parts we found to be the most eye opening.)

More Government Officials Support Dr. Boyd Richards in Land Dispute

By: Tom Oat, Tradewinds Staff

St. Johnian Dr. Monica Boyd Richards went to the Tuesday, February 18, meeting at the office of the Commissioner of the Department of Planning and Natural Resources hoping to get the assistance of government officials in stopping a major commercial construction project on Boyd family property overlooking the Westin Resort on Great Cruz Bay.

Dr. Richards now is waiting for V.I. Attorney General Vincent Frazer to direct the V.I. Police Department to stop further construction on the project on her family property over the construction project on Boyd family land handed down from her late father Edward “Power” Boyd.

Ironically, many of the agency and department heads who were expected failed to attend the meeting in the office of Department of Planning and Natural Resources Commissioner Alicia Barnes to discuss Dr. Richards’ stand-off with the developers of the South Shore Road gas station.

Most of the government officials who were expected to attended the meeting, which had been called by government officials, failed to show — and those who did weren’t about to make any decisions until the were prodded by VIPD Commissioner Rodney Querrard, according to Dr. Richards.

DPNR Comissioner, Others Miss Meeting
DPNR Commissioner Barnes herself did not make the meeting with Dr. Richards at her office.

“The commissioner of DPNR did not come; Commissioner of Public Works Mr. Smalls did not come; (Director Mae) Adams (Cornwall) did not come from Waste Management; Public Works Assistant Commissioner Aubain did come,” Dr. Richards told Tradewinds.

Several of the government officials who did attend the meeting with Dr. Richards openly wondered why there was any question about the ownership of the property since the V.I. government itself has already acknowledged the Boyd family’s ownership of the property by moving government property and a wastewater pumping station from the contested property, Dr. Richards said.

A native St. Johnian and retired U.S. Army attorney, Dr. Richards is a daughter of the late Edward “Power” Boyd, who left his heirs major land holdings in Estate Bethany and neighboring Estate Sans Souci and Guinea Ghutt, encompassing much of the valley overlooking Great Cruz Bay and the Westin Resort.

The meeting had been called by government officials after Dr. Richards went public in Tradewinds with her land dispute over family property in Estate Bethany on St. John which Territorial Court Judge Marie Cabret has affirmed was part of the extensive south shore estate of Richards’ late father Edward “Power” Boyd which estate Cabret probated.

“The gas station has no warranty deed,” Dr. Richards asserted. “DPNR cannot give you any permit until you own the land.”

“Even the government has to have a lease or ownership or right of use to do a government project,” added Dr. Richards who reiterated that the family was not interested in selling the property on which the gas station is being built.

“It’s not for sale,” Dr. Richards said of the contested parcel which is now split by a towering concrete retaining wall supporting the excavation for the roadside service station on the steep hill.

Wow. There’s much more to this story. Click here to read the Tradewinds article in its entirety. 

Feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments section or over on our Facebook page.

Gas Station Site

5 thoughts on “New Gas Station Prompts Land Dispute”

  1. 3 years.
    This station in this location has always been an awful idea. Never understood why the location was not on Centerline (or Coral Bay for that matter). Too bad this issue didn’t occur before they (the Gov’t and the people of StJ) unfortunately allowed this hillside overlooking GCB to be scarred with this hideous gas station. I read somewhere that the family has been fighting it, but it proceeded anyway (good ole USVI politics).

  2. Shame on these politicians for not showing up to this meeting. I never understood this undertaking either…and now it seems likely to drag on for another 3 years.

  3. I have always thought from the beginning that this project like many recent others that raised eyebrows (Frank Powell park, Centerline road repair, New passenger ferries, Mansion construction on Federal land all come to mind) have corruption written all over them. It’s Amerigo 50 years in the future.

    I hate to say it, but I think this type of thing will continue until the Federal Government begins to assume more of an oversight role in USVI government matters.

  4. Typical of the US Virgin Islands. I lived on St Thomas and St John and heard and saw this type of thing continually. Lining their pockets and protecting their interests is all any politician, anywhere in the world, wants to do. Nothing will change for the better, I spend my time on other Caribbean islands-less expensive, friendlier locals, and new adventures.

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