“The Brittons Hill cave collapse changed the real estate market in Barbados forever – but it also empowered a select few to profit or limit their losses as they have access to government cave data that is not available to the vast majority of citizens.“
Barbados Real Estate Market Is Destabilized – Already Going Into Shock
Dear Prime Minister Arthur,
This letter is to notify you that government insiders are already in possession of, and are profiting from, government-owned cave maps, data and studies that are not available to ordinary Barbados homeowners.
As you know, the Government of Barbados has over the years collected extensive maps and other data on the various cave systems that are found throughout our island. Even more extensive cave mapping and studies have recently been commissioned by your government in the aftermath of the Brittons Hill apartment collapse that took the lives of five of the Codrington family.
Many of our homes and businesses are built over cave systems – some known and some yet to be discovered. Obviously, the value of some buildings and properties will plunge if existing or future studies and maps show caves and especially large or unstable caves below the buildings. Likewise, the value of properties located away from cave systems will rise.
All the cave maps and data gathered by the government has now become extremely valuable as people realise the tremendous impact that recent events are having upon real estate throughout our country. The Brittons Hill cave collapse changed the real estate market in Barbados forever – but it also empowered a select few to profit or limit their losses as they have access to government cave data that is not available to the vast majority of citizens.
The fact that some citizens have access to the cave data while most do not is tremendously destabilizing to our real estate market. Bajan real estate agents are already reporting the virtual cessation of real estate purchases by foreigners in only a week since the Brittons Hill cave collapse.
It has been reported to us by a credible source that the cave system under the disaster site at Brittons Crossroad extends to Highgate, Flagstaff and Banks Brewery. We also know that certain groups of insiders are already in possession of the government maps and data that show the extent, depth and stability factors associated with this cave system – and that these persons are making ready to dispose of their real estate holdings in the area while the vast majority of homeowners remain in the dark.
Mr. Prime Minister, the genie is already out of the bottle. The government cannot recall the cave data or know the identity of every person or business that is in a position to profit from the data and so victimize their fellow citizens. Similarly, the government cannot recall the cave data for other parts of the island or know the identity of every person or business that already has the data.
The only ethical and practical action that can now be taken by your government is to make all its existing cave maps, data and studies easily available to all – and then continue to make new data available immediately.
Barbados is about to enter a crisis of confidence in real estate – one that your government has not created, but one that it nonetheless has to manage.
Let the chips fall where they may. As the implications for Barbados real estate values become clearer in the next few weeks and months, it is unethical that only connected government insiders have the knowledge of the cave maps, data and studies.
Publish the cave maps now, Mr. Prime Minister – or witness a melt-down in both Bajan real estate and the credibility of you and your government.
Barbados Free Press, and thousands of Bajan property owners.
Further Reading: Barbados Apartment Collapse – Cave Maps, Surveys, Memories, Government Records Become More Valuable Than Land Itself