Construction of the new parking lot in Windwardside officially started Friday with the late afternoon gathering of a large crowd across from the Catholic Church. This writes The Daily Herald.
Commissioner Bruce Zagers mentioned that traffic congestion is getting worse in Windwardside even though this is hard to believe it is happening on a small island such as Saba. “What would happen if there was a life-threatening emergency and the ambulance or fire truck would need to pass? Although Saba is small, such a delay caused by traffic congestion could mean the difference of life and death,” Zagers stated in his speech.
The Commissioner explained that since government owns almost no land in Windwardside fi nding a realistic and workable solution was not easy.
The pieces of property needed to realise the parking lot were purchased through island government finance. Together with Dutch trainee Robin Aerts, the Planning Bureau then started making plans for the parking lot and a big grey-water cistern. Director of Saba Roads and Construction Jan Hendrik Boekaar stated that in his opinion the present solution was the best and most economical for the people and businesses, especially in Windwardside. “We are grateful for your confidence and willingness to allow Saba Roads and Construction to assist this island in its drive towards a modern Saba,” Boekaar said.
After these speeches, the official project sign was unveiled by Zagers and Boekaar. Thereafter, Zagers climbed into an excavator to clear away the first patch of ground. Next week, construction will start on the grey-water cistern with a capacity of 430,000 litres. The parking lot will be 2,500 square meters and will have one entrance and one exit. The parking areas will be placed diagonally to prevent cars from blocking each other which is currently the case in the parking area in front of the Tourist Office. The magazine section of the former Corner Imports building will be demolished. The total cost of this project is US $1.3 million and is financed through an interest-free loan by the Ministry of Home Affairs and Kingdom Relations. The project is expected to be completed by the end of August.