Tourism body offers backing to Dart plans

| 21/07/2011

(CNS): The directors of the country’s private sector tourism body have thrown their support behind the recent agreement between the Cayman government and the Dart group. CITA said that its board directors recently met with a Dart representative regarding the 'FORCayman Investment Alliance' and spent some time asking questions and discussing the various proposals that form part of the investment deal and land swap with government. The CITA directors were particularly supportive of Dart’s plans for the landfill and its goal to redevelop the derelict Courtyard Marriot into a four or five star resort as they said these would both provide a boost to the tourism product.

“Overall CITA was pleased to hear that Dart has offered a solution for two of the top issues that have been previously identified by CITA as critical success factors for the tourism industry,” the CITA directors stated in a release on Wednesday.

“CITA has stated publicly over the last three years that the landfill and lack of solution to manage Cayman's solid waste is detrimental to Cayman's tourism product. Not only is our main asset at risk, the natural environment, but the negative impression that the dump has on guests is also damaging to the reputation of the Cayman Islands as a leading tourism destination.”

The directors said the development of a new land fill inclusive of the facilities to accommodate recycling would be a major benefit to all residents and tourists.

“This project will provide the infrastructure to start an island wide recycling program which is a seen as a top priority by the Cayman Islands Tourism Association. As an industry the members are eager to support such a programme that would mitigate the effects of solid waste created and look forward to being a part of the solution,” officials from CITA added.

However, Dart has not yet made it clear what will be happening with the new landfill which is said proposed to be developed at a new site in the Midland Acre area of Bodden Town. The firm has stated it will not be managing Caymans solid waste issue but will merely be providing the land and basic infrastructure for the site.  There is still no confirmation from the ministry what will happen to Wheelabrator the US based firm which won the original bid to operate and manage the country’s waste system.

This included mining the current landfill and converting that waste in to energy which was to be sold to CUC.  Without the actual dump in the package it is not clear whether the US firm will be taking on the waste management under the new arrangements or whether the Department of Environmental Health will take on the management of the new landfill once it’s ready for use.

Aside from throwing its support behind the plans for Dart to take care of the dump CITA also offered its support for Dart to redevelop the Courtyard Marriot as the directors said the tourism body has been urging government for some time to do all it can to address the issue of derelict tourist properties.

Officials said members were pleased to see that Dart would be redeveloping the site into something that is expected to enhance the Cayman Islands tourism product. Despite some controversy in the wider community about the movement of the West Bay Road the CITA directors offered their support.

“The changes to West Bay Road in relation to the development are positive for both enhanced residential use and tourism, in so far as creating an improved and expanded public beach and a second beach on the northern side on West Bay road,” it added.

The body also welcomed the news that Barkers would be preserved as a National Park which it said would also benefit the overall tourism product but noted that there was a pressing need to implement the National Conservation Law but the zoning was a step in the right direction.

The directors said that they had put several questions to the Dart representative regarding fair competitive business practice for all members in the future and said they are now waiting for a response

“Overall Dart has a good proven track record for creating developments that promote economic growth and stability as well as improving the overall tourism product which CITA feels goes a long way when considering future proposals,” CITA added as it gave its backing for the overall plans for the alliance.

Category: Tourism

Comments (22)

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  1. Loren says:


    The CITA has given its approval to the Dart project so let's all give it a chance.  Upon the completion of this project the island should be ok and life will be back to normal.  This development will attract the high end tourist like the other properties along the seven mile strip. 

    Give development a chance….. prosperity for all… half a loaf is better than none……. one bird in the hand is better then two in the bush.  

  2. Anonymous says:

    So.., we give away 2500 feet of "public" beach (coz no one can build on it if the road remains) in exchange for 150 feet of public beach and a road to be built along Dart's own property? XXXX

  3. Anonymous says:

    No big surprise here. Tell me CITA, how do you justify this Dart proposal as beig in the best interest of the majority of Cayman and Caymanians? Or was it only in the best interest of the majority of the CITA Members?

  4. Anon says:

    What will be CITA's stance when other developers/owners also wish to close other sections of the WB Road? Over time the WB Road will likely become just sections you get to from the ET Highway. Once the ball is rolling it cannot easily be stopped. I'm not sure that the merchants or clients of the various extablishments will be pleased when that happens.

    I still see no NEED to close a section of WB Road. Reduce the speed on all of it and the traffic will drop significantly. But for those who wish to move at a slower pace the option will still be there and the alternative in place should a short term need arise, e.g. accident/repair/damage on ET Highway.

    Here is a scenario with the road closed. There is a swimming accident at the Public Beach which the WB ambulance responds to as it is closest. How much longer does it take to get there having to go up to Lime Tree Bay to turn back to get to Public Beach? What does that extra time mean?

    • Assume da position... says:

      First, let us assume they get a WB Ambulance, then check back with me – cause a WB ambulance stil gota go to a GT Hospital!!!



      • Anonymous says:

        Nothing to laugh out loud about, shame on you. A West Bay paramedic could save someones life on the way to the hospital in GT.

  5. Anonymous says:

    I heard someone make a suggestion that to avoid closing off the WEST BAY Road , all that needs to happen is for Dart to build a bridge in front of the Courtyard Marriott, similar to the Ritz bridge.

    This would allow the hotel to have full access to beach and prevent the present road flooding issues that occur when there is a storm. The bridge or overpass should then be extended to Coutts to allow the expansion of the Public Beach.

    Then everyone should be happy. Caymanians should not have to loose their "right to a view". In other common law countries the right to a view is a legal right. I am surprised that no one has challenged this yet on legal grounds.

    Dart certainly should be able to afford such a bridge or overpass to achieve a compromise for Caymanians a avoid disturbing their traditional rights.

    • anonymous says:

      We lost our 'right to view" when we sold our land- you will find that in those countries land ownership is the key to such ancient rights. We have to realise we cannot have our cake and eat it too!

      We need the construction we need the work. Mr Dart please get on with it. You will never please 100% of us Caymanians.  Just make sure we get some work out of it. Please.

    • Anonymous says:

      How will building a bridge prevent the flooding?  The least little bit of wave action causes that road to flood with sand and salt water and the West Bay traffic have to be diverted. 

      • Casual Observer says:

        I think they mean that the traffic will go up on the bridge or overpass over the present road, which will allow the existing road to become beach as it does when it floods. The the hotel will then have full access to the beach, and traffic will have a better view of the sea.

        Sounds brilliant to me

  6. Anonymous says:

    Back in school there was a story about a dog who was crossing a steam saw his relection in the water thought that the bone in the water looked bigger opened his mouth in an attempt to get the one in the reflection  and ended up losing what he had.. and the moral of the story is read this

  7. Paradise Lost says:

    Now there’s a surprise…Lord Dart waves his magic checkbook and CITA bows down.  Can someone tell us what the occupancy rates currently happen to be?  

    Cayman will not know what it’s lost until it’s too late.  All hail Lord Dart!!    

  8. Anonymous says:

    Cayman needs this type of REAL action . Not just news stories.

  9. Miller says:

    Good plan UDP!

  10. Anonymous says:

    CITA & Chamber of Commerce need to officially call for removal of mckeeva due to his failures of the last 2 years……..cayman is dying!

    • Anonymous says:

      A M E N! LET IT HAPPEN SOON.  We have a couple of good men in the ruling party, but knowing the dictator, they can only go along, because, knowing him well, nobody dare defy his cock-a-mamie ideas without fear of public embarrassment and worse. 

    • Anonymous says:

      Anon 22;06 can you explain to the Caymanian  people, exactly what those failers are?

      You must be sleeping, because this island is buzzing at the moment, and not too far down the road, we are going to be real busy with Mac's approved success.

      I take my hat off to such a man with vision and foresight, what are you doing to help?besides blowing hot air!

  11. OK Bobo, now we get it... says:

    This story deserves a mega-thumbs up from all sectors in Cayman…

    CITA is composed of a true cross-section of Caymanians (and others – I just need the average anti-expatter out there, these are their own people) with an interest of the long term health and well being of "Cayman, Inc."

    Their stamp of approval should make every Caymanian realise that there are people looking out for the health and well being of this island, and in order to continue the same, we have to work together with developers, compromise where needed, and realise, a rolling stone gathers no moss.

    (For those missing the last comment, it means "you make changes, roll with the times, or you stagnate, gather moss, and, for want of another analogy, miss the boat and revert to whompers and smoke cans" – some more recent arrivals to the island may need to look up the last two references – or attend a few district culture days for a look at life gone by…)

    Go CITA, and those with a vision for Cayman's survival are right there wid unna.


    • Anonymous says:

      And I believe there's a Dart representative on the Board of CITA?

      • Assume da position... says:

        Doubtit, but there are also those that believe the lunar landings were faked, so chose a corner here, ANON!!!

      • Anonymous says:

        Anon 17;36

        So now, you have something against Caymanians? Mr. Dart is Caymanian and like many other business owners, that have members on the CITA board….stop the division of Caymanians please!