Ministry asks people to weigh in on PlanCayman, again

| 19/12/2023 | 54 Comments
Cayman News Service
Graffiti on the FIN Grand Cayman development in 2020

(CNS): The planning ministry, which has now taken the lead in replacing the outdated 1997 Development Plan, is asking the public to submit comments on the process — again. Various governments have tried to rewrite the plan for over a decade, and the PlanCayman project was launched by the Progressives over five years ago with the idea of implementing a plan in areas across Grand Cayman, one by one, starting with Seven Mile Beach.

However, the project has been fraught with difficulties because each government has failed to reconcile the need for dramatic changes to the legislation to protect the environment, especially around the coast, with the pressure from developers seeking to block any limits on projects and profit.

Planning officials are now asking everyone “to actively participate in shaping the future of Grand Cayman, Cayman Brac and Little Cayman” through another consultation of the original PlanCayman, drawn up by the Progressive administration, which has not been updated.

Officials stated in the press release that the plan is intended to “accurately reflect the evolving needs of the country” and enhance the quality of life of residents and visitors with development that “promotes a sustainable and desirable balance of economic, social and environmental outcomes”. But the plan is the same one that has been criticised for its slant towards development.

Now, without former Premier Wayne Panton in Cabinet to ensure that ministers who have been bowing to development pressures understand what “sustainable development” actually means, the plan is no more likely to offer the necessary environmental protections than when it was first drafted by the PPM, who made it clear they had no intention of placing restrictions on development.

Despite clear signs that public opinion is increasingly in favour of preserving the natural landscapes and biodiversity of the Cayman Islands, the consultation remains skewed towards the development sector. Officials claim to have enhanced the “Consultation Strategy” to broaden outreach and engagement efforts, which were geared towards developers during the past consultation. However, it is the same process which began in 2019 and the website has not been updated since then.

Nevertheless, it still offers an opportunity for those concerned about the environment and the excessive development seen in the last few years, driven largely by luxury accommodation to sell on the world market, to express those concerns directly to the government and the decision-makers.

The ministry said it “aims to foster a sense of ownership among residents, ensuring that PlanCayman authentically reflects the community’s vision for responsible development and land use”, though this was not the sentiment expressed by many government MPs during the recent budget process.

In the release, Planning Minister Jay Ebanks spoke about the importance of the reintroduction of PlanCayman, but during his address in Finance Committee last week, he made it clear that development and economic growth outweigh the need for the drastic changes necessary for Cayman to conserve its natural resources and meet the impeding challenges of climate change. The minister has also indicated that the government is seeking another review with a view to curtailing the National Conservation Act, especially the powers of the NCC.

“This is a moment of renewal and rededication to our shared vision for the Cayman Islands. Plan Cayman is not just a plan; it’s a commitment to a better, more sustainable future for all,” the minister said in this release.

See details of the consultation process on the planning website.


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Comments (54)

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  1. Anonimous says:

    Dog City and Randyke Gardens and the Affordable Housing property next to Cox by Dog City, where the first Affordable Homes were initially built, could be re-developed possibly knocking down the existing homes and building Multi-Store Apartments or Condo complexes on multiple floors to provide existing home owners and there families an apartment or condo and selling the other affordable apartments or condos to low and middle income Caymanians to repay the cost to build them

    New Multi-Store Affordable Apartments or Condos could have a pool or pools and possiblt other amenities like:

    A Gym
    Net Ball Courts
    Basketball Courts
    Squash Room(s)
    5-A Side Football

    Monthly Strata Payments are part of the expenses in owning an Apartment or Condo and so is Building(s) and Yard Maintance, in-addition to Home and Life Insurance

    Home and Life Insurance is a bank requirement for a bank mortgage and are usually included and paid monthly by making Monthly Strata Payments

    If PWD, CINICO & the CIDB can engage themselves into a mutual agreement to build Affordable Apartments or Condos for Caymanians that would only include the cost of building materials and labor, eliminating the builders profits; and sell these apartments or condos for the building cost, hundreds of Caymanians would be able to own there own home, i.e apartment or condo with a viriety of sporting athletic activities and an Day Care and after school home work Child Care Center

    These Multi-Store Affordable Apartments / Condos could be built in:

    George Town
    Bodden Town
    North Side
    East End
    West Bay &
    Cayman Brac

    for low and middle income Caymanians earning less than $2,000 or $3,000 per month

    These Multi-Family Affordable Apartments / Condos could also include a covered seating Food Court(s) like what is in the US Malls with Multiple Food Vendors selling local food like Turtle, Oxtail, Conch etc…. to Chicken n Chips and Jerk Chicken for Caymanian families may have a comfortable mixed use living development to live

    A Day Care and an After School Home Work Child Care Study Area/Center ran by our government with three or four of our retired teachers

    Single Parent(s)

    Affordable Studio One Bedroom Apartments / Condos built by our Government Developers PWD, CINICO & CIDB and sold at the building cost of materials and labor only

    One Bed Room / Two Baths
    400□

    Kitchen / Dining & Living
    400□

    20′ * 40′ = 800□ @ $85□

    40 yr Mortgage – $68,000

    Interest Rate 6%

    Appx Monthly Pmt $425

    Monthly Strata appx $300

    Single Parent(s)

    Two Bedroom Apartments / Condos built by our Government Developers PWD, CINICO & CIDB and sold at the building cost of materials and labor

    Two Bed Room / Two Baths
    525□

    Kitchen / Dining & Living
    525□

    20′ * 40′ = 1050□ @ $85□

    40 yr Mortgage – $89,250

    Interest Rate 6%

    Appx Monthly Pmt $471

    Monthly Strata appx $300

    In-addition to After School Programs, each Multi-Family Complex could also offer Summer & Christmas Child Care Programs

    PWD Maintaince Staff could be also be provided with a Public/Private Partnership with the Government to maintain these apartment or condo premises

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    4
  2. Anonimous says:

    Dog City and Randyke Gardens and the Affordable Housing property next to Cox by Dog City, where the first Affordable Homes were initially built, could be re-developed possibly knocking down the existing homes and building Multi-Store Apartments or Condo complexes on multiple floors to provide existing home owners and there families an apartment or condo and selling the other affordable apartments or condos to low and middle income Caymanians to repay the cost to build them

    New Multi-Store Affordable Apartments or Condos could have a pool or pools and possiblt other amenities like:

    A Gym
    Net Ball Courts
    Basketball Courts
    Squash Room(s)
    5-A Side Football

    Monthly Strata Payments are part of the expenses in owning an Apartment or Condo and so is Building(s) and Yard Maintance, in-addition to Home and Life Insurance

    Home and Life Insurance is a bank requirement for a bank mortgage and are usually included and paid monthly by making Monthly Strata Payments

    If PWD, CINICO & the CIDB can engage themselves into a mutual agreement to build Affordable Apartments or Condos for Caymanians that would only include the cost of building materials and labor, eliminating the builders profits; and sell these apartments or condos for the building cost, hundreds of Caymanians would be able to own there own home, i.e apartment or condo with a viriety of sporting athletic activities and an Day Care and after school home work Child Care Center

    These Multi-Store Affordable Apartments / Condos could be built in:

    George Town
    Bodden Town
    North Side
    East End
    West Bay &
    Cayman Brac

    for low and middle income Caymanians earning less than $2,000 or $3,000 per month

    These Multi-Family Affordable Apartments / Condos could also include a covered seating Food Court(s) like what is in the US Malls with Multiple Food Vendors selling local food like Turtle, Oxtail, Conch etc…. to Chicken n Chips and Jerk Chicken for Caymanian families may have a comfortable mixed use living development to live

    A Day Care and an After School Home Work Child Care Study Area/Center ran by three or four retired teachers by our government

    Single Parent(s)

    Affordable Studio One Bedroom Apartments / Condos built by our Government Developers PWD, CINICO & CIDB and sold at the building cost of materials and labor

    One Bed Room / Two Baths
    400□

    Kitchen / Dining & Living
    400□

    20′ * 40′ = 800□ @ $85□

    40 yr Mortgage – $68,000

    Interest Rate 6%

    Appx Monthly Pmt $425

    Monthly Strata appx $300

    Single Parent(s)

    Two Bedroom Apartments / Condos built by our Government Developers PWD, CINICO & CIDB and sold at the building cost of materials and labor

    Two Bed Room / Two Baths
    525□

    Kitchen / Dining & Living
    525□

    20′ * 40′ = 1050□ @ $85□

    40 yr Mortgage – $89,250

    Interest Rate 6%

    Appx Monthly Pmt $471

    Monthly Strata appx $300

    • Anonymous says:

      And you really believe that strata fees will be paid in addition to mortgage , maintenance and utilities expenses..?
      We’re dealing with barely educated, tentatively employed extracts of our third world neighbors, resulting in our very own favelas.

  3. Reginald W says:

    Michael Ryan’s project in the photo is an appalling example.

    Residents raised a petition to protest against Fin Cayman dumping building material on the coral.

    https://www.change.org/p/dale-crighton-protect-cayman-s-reefs-from-construction-development-damage

    The bizzare response from the developer was to blame the weather.

    https://caymannewsservice.com/2021/03/residents-seek-meeting-with-fin-developers/

  4. Anonymous says:

    More of the same Developer Lobby ordering the government to continue the destruction of our Cayman Islands.

  5. Anonimous says:

    I would like to draw our citizens and residents attention to the regional and global escalation in crime that have everyone living in fear

    There is too much crime coming into our island that have been hidden behind isolated, undeveloped and un-inhabbitted areas of the three Cayman Islands for too many years and its time that we encourage development in these isolated, undeveloped un-inhabbitted areas to stamp our the ESCALATING CRIME that has everyone living in fear and affraid to speak out

    I would like to humbly draw your attention to one area of the three Cayman Islands isolated, undeveloped and un-inhabbitted area;

    The Stretch of airport connector to open after long delay

    Less Crime

    Eventhough it took 4 years to build

    https://caymannewsservice.com/2023/12/stretch-of-airport-connector-to-open-after-long-delay/

    It will now provide better lighting in isolated undeveloped hiding areas illegal migrants come onto our shores with with illegal substances and illegal arms

    Hopefully our law enforcement agencies will now be provided with easier and better access to crack down on what really happens after dark in these isolated, undeveloped and uninhabitted areas

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  6. Anonymous says:

    politicians do as they please..waste of energy….ZZZZZ

  7. Anonymous says:

    Here is a thought –
    If we really want to control development in the Cayman Islands, to ensure that development benefits the people of the Cayman Islands, and remove the pressure in the rental market, and to unclog the existing infrastructure then ban all foreign construction workers and only allow Caymanians to work in construction. That would accomplish all of the above almost immediately.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Brilliant! – I love it.

      17
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    • Anonymous says:

      Absolutely!! Cayman should only be built by Caymanians!! Especially in the sister Islands! Keep all that crime involving foreign construction workers out!!

      13
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    • Anonymous says:

      Excellent!! Cayman built by Caymanians!! I love it!!

      13
      4
    • Anonymous says:

      Here’s a plan……stop all the construction. It is destroying the island.

    • Anonymous says:

      Awesome. I’m in. Well done.

    • Anonymous says:

      Yes good idea,
      Now come up with a plan how to get them to show up to work and on time.
      Quality control.
      Wages and benefits consistent with industry standards.
      Sick leave only if sick.
      Dispute settlement without running to local MP.
      No chance to reprimand or discipline .
      Just a few of the headings to deal,with.

      4
      1
    • Anonymous says:

      Brilliant idea, as the projects would never be finished!

      2
      1
  8. Anonymous says:

    The Plan asks, “are we moving in the right direction?” Well, if we keep investing in PowerPoint reports and expect those carefully worded neutral and non-committing statements to guide us anywhere beneficial, I think we are in trouble.

    I appreciate the work that went into the “Plan”, however I wish we would focus less on sounding like a QA/QC seminar and more on actual ideas which we can get behind or refine.

    “Support a thriving and diverse economy that promotes wider economic, social and environmental benefits.” GREAT! Count us all in. Those are well thought out words. I would like to see more ‘nuts and bolts’ outlines — the steps necessary to actually achieve those ideals. Measurable ideas. Steps that require actual action, rather than “urging, supporting, ensuring, encouraging and promoting.” Again, not disagreeing or slagging on the report/plan.

    I hope we can all collectively help with this extremely important plan.

    Toward that end, I have submitted a few ideas, for whatever worth they might have. Merry Christmas/Happy Holidays.

    17
  9. For crying in my soup~ says:

    Really folks can no one else see that it’s already way too late to save Grand Cayman?? You can’t get back what has been lost…….Maybe focus on making sure the same doesn’t happen to the sister Islands??? The vultures have already descended on them, maybe make it more difficult to destroy these two remaining gems……….just a thought eh!

    32
    3
  10. Anonymous says:

    Everyone will die.
    Name me one person who took his assets into the afterlife?
    I’ll wait.

    7
    10
    • Anonymous says:

      2:48 pm Also try naming one billionaire who ever stopped trying to make more more more money.

      22
      2
      • Anonymous says:

        There are lots, even a couple resident in Cayman, but they aren’t necessarily involved in Cayman development or douchery, so aren’t in the headlines.

        5
        4
  11. Anonymous says:

    They find out what the public wants so they will know what not to do

    20
  12. Anonymous says:

    The CIG doesn’t know how to consult the public. These obscure *.ky domain links are a box-checking exercise. Corrupt regimes just need to demonstrate that a public consultation window was open “for two months”, as it says. Then they just do whatever the Cabinet tells them to do. Historically, there is limited interest/onboarding of public comments, largely emanating from the same pro-development planted commentators that were sent the private link. It would be delightful to believe in a mindset change exists internally at CIG, but this unelected UPM/CDP regime, formed from internal coup, doesn’t offer that assurance.

    31
  13. Anonymous says:

    As French economist and author Frederic Bastiat said, “When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men in a society, over the course of time they create for themselves a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that glorifies it.” Does the new Premier have a moral compass?

    51
    • Ironside says:

      “The government consists of a gang of men exactly like you and me. They have, taking one with another, no special talent for the business of government; they have only a talent for getting and holding office.” — H. L. Mencken

      28
      • Anonymous says:

        That lone talent is also debatable.

      • Anonymous says:

        Ok I’ll play as well –

        “When buying and selling are controlled by legislation, the first things to be bought and sold are legislators.” – P.J. O’Rourke

        17
    • Michael says:

      I’m just glad to see a Bastiat line in the comments of CNS.

      10
      1
  14. Anonymous says:

    more waffle…there is no-one in cig or civil service with expertise to tackle this.
    if we can’t be honest , we will never move on.

    22
    2
  15. Anonymous says:

    Cool. So, the foreign construction workers help clog up the road, drive slum landlords to keep packing them in, build crappy, bland, high end developments that few locals can afford, ride roughshod over environmental concerns, and line the pockets of those already rich/receiving backhanders.

    There’s my input.

    68
    1
  16. Anonymous says:

    Dart giveth and Dart taketh away.

    When the WB bypass was built by Dart, driving into GT was no longer a nightmare. But now with the Camana Bay area continually adding more office, retail and accommodation as well as the CIS expansion, housing behind CIS and the medical facility, the gains made in terms of the flow of traffic are quickly disappearing.

    53
    3
    • Anonymous says:

      The bypass was one thing but losing the sea views with the loss of the original WB Road spelled doom to the island… ask any tourist Kenny, they all still looking for the beach.

      66
      1
      • Just Say'n says:

        What road-side sea views are lost?

        If you mean the West Bay Rd. wall at main Public Beach, that wall was built after north-bound crashes at the curve. Unfortunately, one was deadly, going so fast it flew off the curb and crashed into power pole far away.

        Seems safer if faster roadways are inland. Seaside roads with sea view should be limited to 20-25 mph.

        8
        15
        • Anonymous says:

          The WB Road that used to run all the way from town to WB before Dart closed it to build all his foolishness.

          19
      • Anonymous says:

        As a tourist, I used to love the old road from 7MB to West Bay especially at sunrise and sunset. I would roll down the window so I could feel a bit of the sea air, put on some music on the rental radio and take a slow cruise. It was always so peaceful. All the colors of the sea with the colors of the sky. Sometimes, I still think of those drives and it brings back such peaceful memories. Been back a few times, but the roads seem like highways now and the high rise buildings with all the construction zones and traffic no longer seems like the quaint island I feel in love with long ago.

    • Anonymous says:

      The NRA built those expensive roads, with Dart providing single digit millions in cash and a few more as in-kind unskilled oversight. Dart received a colossal land package from the crown (worth hundreds of millions), land-swapped for Soto lands, re-routed west bay road, and is recolonizing public beach. Did Dart fulfill their other obligations to the public to earn-in properly? Who in this regime is auditing their still unmet deliverables to the public?

      20
      1
      • Anonymous says:

        2:39 pm You are wrong on your first statement. The highway extension from Public Beach to West Bay was built by Dart, not the NRA. NRA oversaw and approved plans but Dart did the construction (via local contracts). Your questions are good but the same could be asked of Government ie did they fulfill their obligations?

        7
        3
  17. Anonymous says:

    PlanCayman authentically reflects our thug politicians aspirations of becoming filthy rich by jumping in the developer’s pocket and collaborating to destroy every square inch of Cayman’s remaining natural environment.

    59
    2
  18. Cayman last Generation says:

    CNS you have the absolute right picture for this post the Graffiti is offensive but the recent deposal of the last premier because of his environmental and financial prudence stance by the very corrupt development cabal/Mafiya here indicates who really runs these Muppets we had elected to destroy us!

    72
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  19. Cayman Extinction Event says:

    Plan Cayman finish corrupt every govt entity to do what we want so we can make as much money as we can before Cayman is gone! UPM mission statement revised with one PPM amendment added completely destroy the environment by population expansion and development money.

    36
  20. Anonymous says:

    Sounds like Vision 2008, all show, no go. Just pure window dressing making residents feel like they have input.

    42
    • Anonymous says:

      Vision 2008 promoted by the arrogant governor du jour, who was hoping for a post in the private sector. Both failed.

  21. DaWhaYaGet says:

    Well to start, foreign developers should not be given concessions on build-to-profit projects, they should pay full fees and full duties on all materials. They are not building these for us because the average Caymanian cannot afford a $750K-1.5M dwelling, matter of fact every new development keeps moving the goal post further away from young Caymanians to owning their own home.

    58
    1
    • Anonymous says:

      True comment , but far worse is happening to the field of young and first home owners. (unless you are an accountant or lawyer that just flew in ).
      People are now trapped in the inflated rental cycle, where not only can they not afford to buy a home, any chance they had of saving money is now blown on renting.
      Where in former years, it was easier to obtain a loan to finance a purchase and to put a down payment on a home , instead of renting .
      All comes down to greed. Most Developers had a choice to cater to the local citizenry , for their future home ownership goals & financial security. But have instead chosen the almighty dollar . May they sleep uneasily at night.

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  22. Corruption is endemic says:

    CNS, I get that you are supportive of what Wayne said he was about. But that is not what he delivered. At a certain point you are what your record says you are. Wayne was/is a failure as a leader and any belief he had in the environment or sustainability faded long ago.

    Writing words like this – “without former Premier Wayne Panton in Cabinet to ensure that ministers who have been bowing to development pressures understand what “sustainable development” actually means, ” is beyond laughable at this point.

    Wayne needs to find his big boy pants and own his terrible record if he ever wants to be relevant again.

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  23. Anonymous says:

    The former Premier made a mistake giving Planning to Jay Ebanks and now we are all paying the price. Jay have you ever heard the saying “short term pain for the long term gain”?
    If you don’t address the impact of climate and incorporate actions into the planning process then you are kicking the can down the road for another government to try to fix.
    Same old song and dance, development and greed comes before the future for these islands.
    Jay do you even know what derisking means? Do you understand why the property insurance companies are pulling out of the Caribbean?

    48
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    • Anonymous says:

      Wayne was driven to be Premier he had no option but to give the position to Jay. Time will tell where we will end up as a nation and how hard it will be to live, work and raise a family. When the bottom of the bucket drops out, these same politicians will travel to their second homes in the USA or UK and leave the ordinary person to fend and protect themselves. Take a closer look at how politics destroyed a beautiful country like Jamaica.

      32
      • Anonymous says:

        Well it’s started here, first with Mac, and is now being progressed by Kenneth with Ghetto help from Saunders and Seymour , representing the Jamaican contingent in Bodden town.

        21
  24. Anonymous says:

    Oh those dirty words – Honorable Jon-Jon doesn’t like that type of language! You better watch out CNS, he will send the police after you.

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  25. Anonymous says:

    Sorry no money left in the budget for this as we spent everything already!

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  26. Anonymous says:

    All McBeater driven!

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