MARIGOT--Vice-President Wendel Cocks said Monday more than 80 requests have been submitted so far to occupy the Collectivité’s newly-built concessions on what is known as “Petit Plage,” the section of Orient Beach between Pedro’s and Kon Tiki.
The project is nearing completion with identical restaurant units now visible and painted in pastel colours with wooden decks facing the beach. Cocks said “technical delays” had pushed back the estimated completion time to the end of November. An official opening will take place in December, when the supervising contractor Semsamar officially hands over the project to the Collectivité. He disclosed he is in discussion with First Vice-President Guillaume Arnell to see how the road that leads to the project past the entrance to Club Orient can be upgraded. This could take the form of a concrete overlay to continue what has already been resurfaced back to the turning from the road to Le Galion. However, when this can be accomplished remains to be seen. “It really doesn’t make sense to have a new project like this completed and not have proper access to it,” Cocks reasoned.
The 2,931.668-euro project has eight restaurants, four commercial outlets, boutiques, three water sport concessions, tourist art-and-craft market, public restroom facilities and showers, and parking for 80 cars. Street lighting will offer the possibility for the restaurants to open at night.
Persons, who occupied the original restaurants before their destruction and prior to Hurricane Gonzalo, have first priority to re-occupy the new units. However, Cocks indicated that a commission has been installed to validate the requests, based on fairly strict criteria.
“We won’t be allowing any past mistakes in the operation of these concessions, such as sub- leasing, to occur again. The new occupants will also be getting a temporary occupation permit (AOT), which can be renewed.” Cocks said he was pleased with the layout of the project, which offers good visibility, front and back, essential for security, in addition to having a wider beach than before.
“This project on one of the Caribbean’s most popular beaches is part of the Collectivité’s vision to enhance the attractiveness of the territory, and hopefully we are setting an example for others to follow.”