Minister says Ironwood road talks on hold

| 16/03/2018 | 75 Comments

(CNS): Minister Joey Hew, who is responsible for the National Roads Authority, told the Legislative Assembly this week that talks have stalled between government and the developers proposing a golf resort in Frank Sound over the construction of the East-West Arterial Road extension. Answering a parliamentary question from Deputy Opposition Leader Alva Suckoo about the current status of the road corridor, the minister said the government was “considering all funding options” for the road “but at present the Ironwood negotiations… are on hold”.

The minister said that government would continue to explore public-private partnerships and self-funding options. However, he did not indicate why the talks with the developers, who have promised a major new resort in the area, had stalled.

CNS contacted Ironwood following the comments from the minister and the developers told us that the issue related to what government was prepared to commit to regarding funding.

“Ironwood continues to hold funding and design is in place to carry out the EWC road works,” the developer claimed. “The impasse has to do with what share CIG commits to the project. Ironwood needs the EWC (east-west corridor) but not at an unfair share of the cost. The EWC has been planned since Hurricane Ivan and its construction benefits everyone.”

The investors behind the proposed resort project, which was billed as including an Arnold Palmer golf course, had always stated that the extension of the East-West Arterial was a deal breaker for the project. The government had, however, made it clear that it was not in a position to fund the road at the time the project was proposed and had stated it could hold liability for the costs.

Nevertheless, the previous PPM-led administration had continually touted the proposed resort as one of two major eastern district projects that could expand the tourism product and enhance Cayman’s broader future economic fortunes.

But there has been almost no movement on either the Ironwood project or the Beach Bay resort proposal.

During the exchange in the LA about the road, Hew told members that the NRA was undertaking a lighting review of the existing stretch of the road because of concerns over some of the darker stretches. He explained that the full lighting plan for the road project was planned to be part of the second phase but it accepted it needed to consider lighting options now, given the safety concerns for cyclists and walkers.

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Category: Local News

Comments (75)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Can’t we have a road instead of a golf course?!

  2. Anonymous says:

    sounds like he’s broke and got we wanted fr CI!!

    • Anonymous says:

      How long are we going to expect this development to take place. Please try to hitch our wagon to another horse. I understand the man is poorer than a church mouse. Enough already.

    • Anonymous says:

      What about any customer sales money/deposits they collected pre-construction? I remember the ads. Hope everyone gets their $ back.

  3. Anonymous says:

    I sense there’s more to this….going with a hunch it’s all related to the dump relocation that’s very probably going to come back on stream….let’s wait and see, but there’s a lot of land involved and there’s a resident well known developer with a land obsession…and a dump to move..tick tock

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  4. Anonymous says:

    New roads? How about putting the importation to new cars to this island to a halt! Specifically the Japanese cars! Cayman will soon be another Bermuda! 1 car per family. Mark my word

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  5. Anonymous says:

    if you want to solve congestion and traffic issues, forget new roads….cayman needs to decentralise from gt.
    the perfect opportunity would have been to locate the goab in the east… but cig had not got the brains to do that.

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  6. Anonymous says:

    I don’t want Cayman to turn into this sick and twisted vision people have. I want Cayman to preserve our ecological heritage.

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    • Anonymous says:

      nice sentiment….but your ecological heritage is appalling….near eradication of turtles, over fishing, destruction of coral reefs, mount trashmore…..etc

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  7. Anonymous says:

    Ironwood is never going to happen. They lack funding to start, much less complete, the project.

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  8. Anonymous says:

    Instead of a cruise dock for downtown jewelers putting that money into infrastructure and education would help more local residents. The CIG could start building the East West Arterial instead of always looking for someone else to pony up.

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  9. Anonymous says:

    What happened to the proposed move of Rubis and Sol from Jackson Point? I thought that was going on Dart’s property next to Midland Acres that is now for sale at US$ 85 million? Remember that was the proposed new Waste Management Facility.

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  10. Lucy says:

    More roads are not the answer to our traffic congestion. I’ve never seen traffic back up to Bodden Town it’s all the way onto the Linford Pierson Bypass where it bottle neck both in the morning and the opposite way in the evening. The problem is we have way too many car on the roads. I would state we have more cars on island than the population.

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    • Anonymous says:

      I live in BT. From 6.30 am almost every school day the traffic jam starts just before Northward and goes all the way to Countryside. Bumper to bumper. Barely moving, and then LPH, and then town.

    • Anonymous says:

      Not sure where you’re travelling but from before 6:30 am there’s bumper to bumper traffic from BT to Linford.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Why is it so difficult to develop in the eastern districts? The MLA’s should be ashamed of themselves. Bodden Town MLA’s should be fighting for the extension of the EWA from Hirst Road to Lookout Road every time the house is in session. Let’s all start writing letters to them to complain about the traffic and see how they respond.

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    • Anonymous says:

      It’s not Lookout Road anymore. It is Harvey Stephenson Road and that should tell you all you need to know….

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    • Anonymous says:

      Because investors/developers don’t want to have to deal with those MLA’s!

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    • Anonymous says:

      every one knows why there is no development on the eastern side

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    • Anonymous says:

      As someone from the eastern side of the island, the lack of “development” is just fine by me. I really don’t like what the western side of Grand Cayman has turned into.

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      • Anonymous says:

        Me too. If they could just fix the road like they did in WB so I can have a 10 hour day instead of 12, that is all I ask, thank you please CIG.

    • Anonymous says:

      That won’t fix the mess at Hurleys. I drive to BT every night and the longest and worst part of the journey is getting to, and past Hurleys roundabout. After that it’s plain sailing. Yes, complete the EW Arterial, but bring it thru (or bypass) Hurleys so there is a natural flow from LPH all the way through to the East. If that can’t be done build a flyover or go through the wetlands.

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  12. Anonymous says:

    There needs to be a separate route and special schedule for the school buses.

    Heavy dump trucks should only be allowed on the road at night. Cement trucks are ok during the day as their cargo is time sensitive.

    At the very least, there needs to be a four-lane highway from West Bay to Frank Sound through the middle of the island with roundabouts and turn-offs in key districts to keep traffic flowing at all times.

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  13. Anonymous says:

    These people are all TALK and it’s so annoying!!!

    Everyone that lives in the eastern districts from Spotts to Frank Sound need to put pressure on their MLA’s to get this road built. The traffic is HORRENDOUS and people are getting late for work every single day because the roads are too congested.

    If you can’t do it all at once, do it in stages:

    Stage 1: Improve lighting for existing EWA, add 2 additional lanes going either way (no need for the for the large grassy areas between the lanes. The blinking stop light is nice. Do other things like that to keep us safe. Oh, no light poles, use underground power.

    Stage 2: EWA road extension from Hirst Road to Will T Drive (Lower Valley). Raise funds and lower costs by asking wealthy Savannah residents to donate the land between Hirst Road and Will T. Most of it is swamp anyway so use pylons where possible to keep the water flowing underneath.

    Stage 3: Will T Drive to Lookout Road (behind Bodden Town)

    Stage 4: Let Ironwood take it from Lookout Road to Frank Sound Road. Government can assist with claiming the land and protecting the fresh water lenses.

    Other ideas:

    Start with dirt roads and pave them later. Most people may appreciate being able to get to work early in a dusty car rather than late in a clean one.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Why does Ironwood have to support the building of the EWA when Harvey Stephenson did not have to do that for his Lookout Gardens subdivision? Does it not seem like a complete double standard?

      Plus, half the lots in Lookout Gardens sit empty and are a trash dumping ground. If you drive through the Lookout Gardens subdivision it is an eyesore. I guess as a Developer with friends in high places or places where you can pay ginormous legal fees to get them to, you are absolved of contributing to the greater good in Cayman. Pure rubbish.

      The CIG cannot expect developers to donate infrastructure. If they do expect it, they should expect it of all developers and not cherry pick.

      Tax. The fair and only way around the growing pains is tax.

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      • Anonymous says:

        Let’s remember that when one subdivides land to let other members of your family get what is handed down. Government will make a lot of revenue from the eventual sale or development. They also get planning fees plus you have to wait till it goes through water, road, electrical and lets not forget Environment boards for their approval. Even if its in the middle of the swamp which clearly does not have any infrastructure. Plus you have to wait over 6 months for something that shouldn’t take more then a week.
        Lets be honest its time for the Eastern Districts to develop into everything that is wrong with going to work to GT. If they had built a proper Airport in the middle of the island we wouldn’t be in the mess we’re in now. Owen Roberts should be a private airport and a proper international airport should be done with 2 runways with reserved land to expand. That is of course if you expecting more locals or tourists to come and go.
        There will never be proper transportation to the Eastern Districts unless its run by Gov’t. so cars are here to stay.

        • anonymous says:

          Not sure I follow your train of thought 9:07?

          If the CIG is making all this money in fees, why are they putting it upon developers to build the roads? Where do the fees go?

          Furthermore, surely you are not making the argument that land which is being subdivided for inheritance purposes should be tax exempt?

          I also do not believe the airport is the crux of the problem. Over congestion of the George Town business centre and SMB area is the issue.

          Yes, a new airport should be made. But I do not believe the airport is the the main cause of the congestion on the morning and afternoon commutes.

      • Anonymous says:

        Because Ironwood said they had to have the road (as opposed to it being a public/general need that Govt. should support). If they have to have it then they will have to pay for the part that the public doesn’t need (know).

    • Anonymous says:

      None of that will fix the traffic to Hurleys, which is the elephant in the room.

  14. Anonymous says:

    I feel we should make a deal with the Chinese to get roads completed as this project is to important to mess up

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  15. Anonymous says:

    Forget the golf course. We need the road NOW!

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  16. Anonymous says:

    Thank you to the Opposition for bringing these important details to light! It seems like a lot of the PPm campaign promises were only fools comforts

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  17. Anonymous says:

    Regardless of the golf course the road needs to be built. It’s way overdue and north side and East end are flourishing with development. Traffic ain’t gonna get any better.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Exactly. Enter the double standard of some developers having to provide and others not having to provide.

      • Anonymous says:

        6:17pm. Especially if planning has anything t of eith it. They penalize the middle and lower class, while the rich and famous are allowed to do whatever they want to do. They are good for running a project through the ground.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Traffic ain’t gonna get any better even with this ill conceived road. That is not where the issue lies.

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  18. Anonymous says:

    Increase the population to 100,000 as has been suggested by government without major road infrastructure improvement and you will have one h*ll of a mess.
    Some days now it is bumper to bumper from Hurley’s to Boddentown in the weekday mornings.

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  19. Anonymous says:

    clear as mud , joey!

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  20. Anonymous says:

    a typical ppm update that leaves more questions than answers..

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  21. Anonymous says:

    Better Lighting Now, yes. Ironwood Extension? No. – Yes we’ve had lots of roads planned for a long time. We even have an (unapproved) Master Ground Transportation Plan. 🙂 But that doesn’t mean that we have to build a road now just because a single developer claims they will fail if they don’t cut 10 minutes (or whatever) off their travel time.

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    • Anonymous says:

      comment don’t make sense

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      • Anonymous says:

        Part of the developers argument is that the road has been planned, so therefor the road should be built. The comment was pointing out the logical fallacy of that line of reasoning.

    • Anonymous says:

      My dear, it’s the people of the Eastern districts doing the complaining because we spend hours in bumper to bumper traffic every day, and would like to spend time with our families rather than have to set off before they wake in a morning and get home when the kids are either in, or going to bed. That hour + saved every day could give us quality time with our loved ones.

      • Anonymous says:

        Exactly!!!! Yet they wonder why kids are sleep deprived….. They’re having to wake at the crack of dawn to start their daily commute and are then dropped to school extra early and by the time they are collected (assuming they stay to afterschool or whatever) they’re only able to spare enough time to eat dinner & get ready for bed (probably have a few minutes to spare on homework if they’re lucky). These “money people” who don’t have to go through this on a daily basis would never understand the struggle.

  22. #CAYMANKIND says:

    Without DART or CHEC to fund this project it’s permanently on hold!

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  23. Anonymous says:

    Like the cruise dock, ain’t ever gonna happen…

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  24. Concerned says:

    Pleaseeeee Joey,

    Reconsider. If well off people want to play serious golf, make them go off the island and do so!

    Cayman is too small to be made into grass deserts. Cutting down our trees only makes it hot for everyone!

    Can CNS do a poll to see how are Caymanians attitude about having golf lands on our islands?

    CNS: OK, I’ll do one next week. (Feel free to remind me if I forget!)

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    • Anonymous says:

      How do you tell from a poll on here who is Caymanian?

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    • Anonymous says:

      Can we have a Paper Caymanian option too please?
      Also, be sure to break the Caymanian categories down by individual generations.

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      • Slacker says:

        Why not add gender, age, race, sexual orientation, marital status, religion, and metal health status as well?

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    • Anonymous says:

      Exactly. I don’t want my Islands to lose the ecological heritage that it has for the sake of some rich guys who want to play golf in the Caribbean. Cayman is losing what makes it unique. More Caymanian need to buy land that way and refuse to sell it.

  25. Anonymous says:

    As if anyone did not see that coming. Pie-in-the-sky expectation of developers that public money would go towards making them rich.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Pie in the sky developers with nothing to offer Cayman or billionaire developer who does everything first class without expecting to squeeze every last cent out of his development. Which do you prefer. Maybe we need to stop complaining about the one and only developer who gets projects done on time and add value to the country.

  26. Anonymous says:

    LOL!

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  27. Anonymous says:

    No one seriously believes Ironwood will ever be developed. Ironwood, Beach Bay, Mandarin, Dragon Bay, the ice arena ………..

    Only one developer that you can 100% take seriously.

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    • Spot on. What ever happened to the Manse Road extension to Pedro’s. Nothing and the Beach Bay project is just pie in the sky. The government and the public are very gullible. Reminds me of Jean Doucet in the old days.

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    • Anonymous says:

      This is such an easy task. Shelve the mega-port project (no one wants it) and divert all funds to this road (everyone needs it).

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  28. anonymous says:

    Arnold Palmer’s great-great-great-great-grandson will cut the ribbon to officially open the golf course. Construction of the buildings will come later.

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