(JamaicaObserver)PRESIDENT of the Jamaica Hotel and Tourist Association (JHTA) Robin Russell has welcomed the news of an agreement for the upgrade and takeover of the street lights on the Elegant Corridor in Montego Bay, St James.
Russell told the Jamaica Observer that he is elated that the issue, which many people have complained about, is now being addressed.
“I’m very happy that finally we’ve come to the finalisation of the lights being turned over to JPS [Jamaica Public Service Company]. We’re hoping that the whole corridor will be lit, we’re very happy to hear that,” said Russell.
“The Elegant Corridor will be lit and responsibility is now with JPS and we’re hoping that the work will will be done in short order to have everything up and running,” added Russell.
In welcoming the announcement, Russell argued that for far too long individuals have faced challenges going about their business on the roadway because of the poor lighting.
“Too many lives have been lost because of the darkness and therefore, we are really happy to hear that,” said Russell who pointed out that the uneven road surface is also an issue.
“It is the primary roadway for our guests, our staff and therefore anything that enhances the safety of that roadway is fully encouraged and supported by the JHTA,” added Russell.
Last week the National Works Agency (NWA) announced that it has formalised an agreement with the JPS for the start of work aimed at rehabilitating the lighting infrastructure along the Elegant Corridor.
The NWA noted that sections of the corridor, from the Lilliput main road to the roundabout at Sangster International Airport, have been without sufficient lighting for several months. It said this was due, in part, to damage resulting from motor vehicles colliding with some of the utility poles in the area.
But Stacy-Ann Delevante, acting manager, communication and customer services at the NWA, later told the Observer that before the JPS takes full control of the lighting infrastructure, there has to be rehabilitation work done on the lights that are now not working.
“It takes effect when the work is done and then the Government will send inspectors to pass it and then it is handed over to the JPS,” said Delevante.
She noted that the NWA will carry out its assessment along with the JPS and the contractors, who are linked to the company.
According to Delevante, the extent of the damage to the lighting infrastructure is not currently known but the NWA is working with the JPS to determine that.
She pointed out that the agreement between the NWA and the JPS will not only apply to the Elegant Corridor as there are other areas around the island where JPS will also take over the lighting infrastructure.
These include Liguanea to Lady Musgrave Road, Harbour View, Dunrobin to Molynes Road, and Michael Manley Boulevard in the Corporate Area where the street lighting is insufficient.
The signing of the contract between the two entities also marks the official transfer of ownership and responsibility for all street lighting infrastructure owned by the Government to JPS. The agreement covers both existing and future lighting infrastructure.