(BROOKLYN, New York): CARIBBEAN TIMES NEWS (CTN) has learned that the President of the Jamaica Institute of Architects Christopher Lue is worried that the rate of development in the housing and commercial sectors is outpacing the needed and necessary supporting infrastructure and that failure to address the imbalance will exacerbate an already broken system.
He said that while successive administrations have fallen in love with the idea that development means having a Miami-like skyline, it behooves the pertinent authorities to consider building out the country’s overwhelmed infrastructure, including modernizing the fire brigade to respond to disasters of particular types and updating the building code to address the National Spatial Plan.
The outspoken Lue said that if Jamaica intends to copy developed cities as a means of showing its own level of development, it must also be willing to upgrade the inadequate essential infrastructure, including water supply, sewage, waste-water removal and treatment, as well as parking.
“I am not against development, but we have to make sure we get it done in a structured way. That includes making sure that a building that stands 20-storeys or higher has the requisite safety features,” Lue said.
“These safety infrastructures must include sprinkler systems, fire-suppressant building materials, a well-equipped fire brigade with the wherewithal to reach the top floors of these buildings, and adequate water resources for everyday use.” Lue is concerned that while the much-needed focus is on the widening of major roadways across the Corporate Area, dubbed the ‘Legacy Projects’, other important pieces of infrastructure are yet to be improved.
He said that part of improving the system was the construction of the Soapberry Treatment Plant, which was built to increase the