Barbican Square Roadworks: An Example of Government Disregard for People’s Safety

We know about the “Not in My Backyard” mentality, don’t we? However, the situation in Barbican in uptown Kingston warrants more than the regular whining about urban infrastructure. Blogger Susan Goffe did a tour of the area, and took photographs. It is a nightmare, and I believe shows extreme disrespect to the general public by the developers and government agencies concerned. I am quite surprised that no one has fallen into a huge hole or suffered injuries as a result of all this. Telling us to “exercise caution” is really not enough. In fact, it’s a bad joke.

Right Steps & Poui Trees

Whether or not the construction going on in Barbican Square will bring the promised benefits is not the subject of this blog post. What I want to consider is whether the situation I saw last week Thursday night and Friday afternoon is indicative of government that values the safety and well-being of its citizens.

JIS March 2017 release re Barbican roadworksThe Barbican Road Improvement Project has been going on for many months now. This release from Jamaica Information Service (JIS) in March last year described the scope of the planned work and indicated the timeframe for some of the phases. It included the following advice from Manager for Communication and Customer Services at the National Works Agency (NWA), Stephen Shaw:

Mr. Shaw urges persons to exercise caution as they traverse that area.

“There will be difficulties and challenges while the project is ongoing, but it will be for a greater good; and so, we are asking persons…

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