Expansion of Kingston’s infrastructure is critical for the continued growth and development of the area, says mayor, Senator Councillor Delroy Williams.
These include drain and sewerage networks, markets, cemeteries among others.
Addressing Tuesday’s meeting of the Kingston and St Andrew Municipal Corporation, in downtown Kingston, Senator Williams explained that the present capacity of the drain network is not able to treat with the volume of surface runoff.
“Part of the infrastructure – medium to long term – vision must be to expand the drain network within the city,” the mayor of Kingston said.
“The city is growing and is expected to grow [even more], which means that more people will come into the city, whether they are visitors or residents… and so as we look forward to the growth of the city we also have to plan, and there is a large number of planning projects in place to deal with that,” he added.
Senator Williams informed that the Government has major plans for the development of the sewerage infrastructure.
“The issue of sewerage infrastructure is a serious issue and if we are going to grow the city of Kingston and move in the direction of the destination city, then the infrastructure is a must, and the Government has major plans for this,” he said.
In the meantime, Senator Williams called for greater funding from the Central Government to address some of the infrastructural projects that he deemed as critical to the “economic life of the city”.
“When we look at the city in totality, we are saying there are different types of infrastructure within the city space that need attention, and we are also saying that the resources available to the municipality can treat, to some extent, with that, and we have been doing that, but then we need support,” he said.
“We are not saying that we have not been supported, because we have. We have been supported by the ministry with roads, markets and parks, but we are still asking for an increase in the level of support, in order to respond to what is happening in the city… which will require major infrastructure overhaul,” the mayor said.
Meanwhile, Senator Williams said the annual drain-cleaning programme, in preparation for the upcoming hurricane season, will commence with the cleaning of critical coastal drains.
The exercise seeks to reduce flooding, and forms part of the Municipality’s hurricane-preparedness activities.
Mayor Williams said that, thereafter, critical non-coastal drains will be cleaned and cleared.
“After that, we do a general cleaning of drains across the municipality to ensure that we mitigate flooding,” he said.