Gibbs’ Union for Democracy lays out heritage plan

POSTED: 11/30/11 7:24 AM

MARIGOT, St. Martin – The Union for Democracy’s commission on Heritage has recommended that the various villages be upgraded into order to create economic activity and ensure that important historic buildings are preserved. The commission, which is co-chaired by Myriam Herault and Christophe Henocq, announced their findings at a press conference together with the party leader Daniel Gibbs on Tuesday.
According to their report a Union for Democracy government will work with the Heritage Foundation to complete an inventory of historic buildings. The inventory for Marigot, St. James, Grand Case and French Quarter is already complete, but the list for other areas needs to be finished. Once this is finished the administration will go over to creating a heritage policy that focuses on using the building to add value to the tourism product, increase national pride and improving the living environment in rural and urban environments. The policy will also allow the government to regulate new construction near heritage sites and strictly enforce safety regulations.
The core of the plan is upgrading Marigot, which the Union for Democracy commission states is in disrepair, has no character and no soul and been transformed from a place of life into a ghost town. Redeveloping the capital will be a key part of a Union for Democracy government’s cultural tourism policy and run parallel to their plans to redevelop the water front. Some of the planned projects for upgrading the capital’s historic sites are re-landscaping the city, creating pedestrian or semi-pedestrian streets where cars may only enter if they can show a residents pass or if they are working to making deliveries. There are also plans to create a car park on the outskirts of Marigot, create a park and other green spaces, installing adequate lighting, improving security, putting in public toilets in high traffic areas and ensuring the city remains clean.
The Union for Democracy commission has also said that their government will research if they can construct bike paths and create a shuttle through the town. They also want to create a new arrival and departure area for tourists at the water front, create a new area for the taxis and deploy a brigade of territorial police to patrol the city center.

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