Who knows when the island's million dollar under-construction parking lot at Enighed Pond is available for use? The designer says there are serious problems which need serious money to solve; the government says "soon."
On behalf of the local Chamber of Commerce chapter, Kate Norfleet contacted the designer, deJongh & Associates, to ask when the lot will be ready. She reported to Chamber members in an e-mail, "The news was not as good as I would have liked."
She was told four items are delaying the project. Two of them must be solved with money – more – which has not been budgeted and isn't available now. Those include the cost of higher fencing around the barge dock area and the paving of parking spaces for the handicapped.
Other issues involve drainage at the corner across from the tennis courts, where flooding is common. Installing a pipe and some pumps would solve it but, again, there's no money. (Photo courtesy of Tropical Focus Photography.)
Finally Norfleet said, "The solar lights have been installed but don't seem to be working …"
She asked why the lot couldn't be used as is, until money is available to make the improvements. "The response I got was that they didn't want to 'give us something and then take it away'."
"Now we have an empty lot for who knows low long – due to issues that surely should have been addressed when designing the lot," Norfleet said. "To have spent so much time and money on a parking lot we can only stare at is absurd."
Norfleet said her complaints – and those of Chamber members – had been heard. In an e-mail, two days later, the Public Works Department said its Commissioner, Darryl Smalls, is working "with the project manager to complete punch-list items." He said the project is 90% complete "and the official opening of the lot will be announced as soon as these last few items have been wrapped up."
Norfleet added she was pleased by what she called the 'quick' response from Public Works and is optimistic the lot may open for use soon.