Mona Heights Citizens Association
RE: HOPE GARDENS HOUSING SCHEME
The Mona Heights Citizens Association wishes to add its voice to
the objections being raised by a wide cross-section of the public
to the housing scheme being contemplated for the Hope Gardens lands.
Our views are:-
1. A suitable portion of this area should be left for expansion
of the zoo which is presently not adequate even for the few animals
we have and which has always been a source of delight to our children.
The annual camp held there every year is an environmental and learning
experience for children. What a joy and benefit it would be to them
if there were more animals and a proper wetlands habitat which is
quite feasible in this area due to its proximity to the Hope river.
2. The car parking area for local and overseas visitors to
Hope Gardens and the zoo also needs to be enlarged to accommodate
the growing motor vehicle density. If this is not done imagine the
situation in a few years time with our burgeoning human and automobile
3. With the introduction of more housing in this area the
traffic congestion which we are already experiencing from Papine
along Hope Road and into the City is bound to worsen. Far better
that housing developments be undertaken to the East or West of Kingston
where there is space for new roads accessing the city over the Long
Mountain range, or through a redeveloped West Kingston; alternatively
to a ring road which simply has to come about sooner of later.
4. Space should also be left for further expansion of the
University of Technology which is fast outgrowing its presently
allotted space. As at modern universities all over the World the
campus and its faculties should be integrated with surrounding gardens
and parks to provide the most conducive atmosphere for mental development
and creativity. Before any decision is taken in relation to the
subject scheme an envoy should be dispatched to York University
in Toronto, for instance, to learn and observe modern concepts in
this particular field.
5. Sewage disposal is also an increasingly serious problem.
Already there are far too many absorption sewer pits serving housing
developments in the Liguanea Plains. Wells are needed in the lower
Kingston area by a number of manufacturers for their processing
operations. The Kingston Icemaking Company for example could not
possibly manufacture ice for the price at which it is selling if
it had to purchase all its requirements from the National Water
Commission. Although very sophisticated purification plant is being
employed there is a limit of pollution to our underground streams
that can be tolerated. Seprod, Caribbean Products and Desnoes &
Geddes brewery are other cases in point. Again before any decision
is taken to go ahead with this scheme a study by appropriately qualified
(including local), professionals must be undertaken.
As an Association we join all those who are against reckless development
of this particular area. We do not believe that housing schemes
have any place in the small remaining parklands and recreational
spaces available to our citizens now and the distant future.