Minister Jacobs gives Raoul Illidge Sports complex priority: Upgrade sports facility in Cay Hill begins soon

POSTED: 02/11/13 2:40 PM

St. Maarten – Six facilitates are in need of repairs and upgrade but only two will be given priority for now, Youth and Sports Minister Silveria Jacobs told parliamentarians who asked questions about the deplorable condition of facilities like the Raoul Illidge Sports Complex (RISC), last Friday. United People’s Party parliamentarians Jules James and Johan Leonard wanted to know when attention would be given to RISC.  Jacobs made it clear that she inherited the situation at the Cay Hill facility but that work would begin soon to upgrade it in three phases.

“The situation that I met in May of 2012 was that the Raoul Illidge and several other sporting facilities were in a horrible state and needed urgent repairs. Upon my investigation, an advice turned up after two months signed by the former Minister of Education, Dr. Rhoda Arrindell for approval for the upgrade.

However the former Minister of Finance Hiro Shigemoto clearly stated that the upgrade totally hinged upon our hosting of the Kingdom Games in 2013. Since we could not prove that we would at that time, it was put on hold,” Jacobs told a central committee of the Parliament.

The package that Dr. Arrindell had signed off on included RISC, the Jose Lake Cooper Ballpark, Little League Stadium, Melford Hazel Centre and Great Bay Sports Auditorium.

The minister said that with time against the government and a worsening situation, she decided to select RISC from out of the upgrade package and make it a priority. The process has been finalized and the first phase of upgrade should see the football field and athletics track getting a facelift within a few weeks.

The bleachers (stands) and the construction of a 50 feet pool will form part of phase two while phase three comprises the creation of “multifunctional sports complex where a lot of indoor sports can be played,” the minister said.

This week, she also wants to finalize the preparatory process for the upgrade of the Little League Stadium in time for its July hosting of the Kingdom Games. If construction at this facility cannot be realized, the minister said that contingency plans will be put in place. She explained that several emergency meetings have been held with the Little League Association to update them on the process.


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Minister Jacobs gives Raoul Illidge Sports complex priority: Upgrade sports facility in Cay Hill begins soon by

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