Was this destruction really necessary?

UPDATED: October 8, 2011

The story of Boarded Hall Green is back in the news with Barbados National Trust President Karl Watson saying he’s had enough of the destruction.

“With ground now being broken at the new multi-million dollar Boarded Hall Green gated community, due for completion in 2013, BNT President Karl Watson said the felling of an estimated 40 trees at the location of the project month ago warrants answers and action.

But one of the men behind the housing initiative, chartered accountant Tony Hoyos, today brushed off suggestions the housing venture being marketed as an eco-friendly community, was actually an enemy to the environment since it would occupy a location previously occupied by several trees.”

Read the whole story at Barbados Today: National Trust fed up!

BFP’s original post June 25, 2011…

These beautiful large and old trees are gone forever

by CondoMan

Can someone please explain why these many trees were cut down near the new roundabout at Boarded Hall house? About 40 trees were cut down.

I understand that news condos will be built on the site, but surely they could have saved some trees, integrated them into the plan and worked around them during the building.

These beautiful large and old trees are gone forever.

I found this website that says the new Boarded Hall Green is an “eco-friendly designed gated Condominium Community.”

How “eco-friendly” does the above photo look?

Boarded Hall Green is a new eco-friendly designed gated Condominium Community. It is situated to the immediate north-west of the new roundabout at the intersection of Boarded Hall, Carmichael and Frere Pilgrim. BHG provides modern,architect-designed living for its occupants, and comprises 8 studios, 40 one-bedroom and 14 two-bedroom apartments. There is also a communal pool, washer/ dryer facilities for heavy-duty laundry and an on-site property management office.


Filed under Barbados, Environment

45 responses to “Was this destruction really necessary?

  1. Karl Watson

    I am glad to see that some one has high lighted the extreme loss of trees at the Boarded Hall development. Several people have called me to complain about what they perceive to be the willful creation of a barren landscape. This seems to be the new trend with developments..a sort of scraped earth policy reminiscent of what took place at Paradise. Maybe a landscaping expert can comment on the wisdom of such an approach. It seems counterproductive to me. Each mature tree is a micro world unto itself…cut it down and hundreds of other life forms disappear, “gone through the eddoes” as we say here in Barbados. Hopefully, the developers themselves might come on this blog to explain their rationale for encouraging deforestation at a point in time in world history when trees are being actively promoted for the crucial role they play in reducing carbon levels.

  2. The Watcher

    How else are we going to progress unless we destroy and dessimate our environment like the copy-cat, numb-nuts that we are!
    Condos, Villas, blah, blah blah and not a fruit tree, blade of green khus-khus grass or un-obstructed water-course. Give carte-blanche to those who have oogles of money to fling around to drag the place into oblivion with their carnal stupidity and greed. Create “low-income” housing that looks more like modified dog houses than human dwellings and allow other construction entities to spew trash in the local paper about “come Join the other young professionals in the…” at out-rageous prices that will ensure these professionals will remain economically enslaved for years to come.
    And when all this is going on, wave your flag high and proclaim how much of a developing nation we are based on some synthetic benchmark.
    I just love this s*(T!

  3. Sunny Knight

    Why the hue and cry over dead wood? Well, without balance, the survival of future generations is compromised. Mars is not sufficiently ready for human colonization; ergo man’s zeal to master the home planet has to be tempered. Unabashedly, notions of progress are still premised on nineteenth century Victorian values. We are still too busy conquering nature to be concerned with anything else. The ‘Veni, Vidi, Vici mentality’ has not fully given way to the 21st Century concepts of sustainable development and green economies … so neutering landscapes for the aesthetic appeal of steel and stone is not unconscionable.

  4. FearPlay

    On another point- can anyone remember when Belleville and Strathclyde were “Gated Communities”? We condemed and fought tooth and nail to have that cancer removed from our landscape. What do we now have? Every new ‘development’ is being advertised as a “Gated Community”. How many real Barbadians want OR need to live in such? Could it be that our foreign influx from wealthier places are running from home invasions and abductions! Will it follow them here? Incidentally, Strachclyde and Belleville never lacked abundant plant life. Gated Communities – the new segregation!

  5. Double Standards or Who know Who Standards??

    So much for preserving our built and natural heritage! Which planning authorities apporved this? Are these the same planning authorities that have lobbied for the UNESCO designation. If so, why the double-standard?? It appears that there is no standard……just who knows who and who can pull strings to get what they want. Might as well just destroy everything and stop masquerading behind protection of heritage while allowing things like this to happen!

  6. Prince of Barbados/I LOVE MY BARBADOS

    DEPRESSING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I HATE TO SEE THIS HAPPEN TO MY BEAUTIFUL ISLAND! THEY WANNA SCRAP MY ISLAND OF ALL ITS NATURAL BEAUTY UNTIL SHE IS AS BARREN AS BARREN CAN BE! I’m so upset that I’m going to scream into a pillow now…Bye Bye

  7. Prince of Barbados/I LOVE MY BARBADOS

    I just went to this development’s page and i filled out the contact form and in it I put this:
    “HOW DARE YOU DESTROY BEAUTIFUL OLD TREES?! AND YOU CALL YOUR SELF AN ECO-FRIENDLY DEVELOPMENT?!?! Too long has development been allowed to obliterate this beautiful island….the time has come to HALT these destructive trends. Our landscape is in desperate need of revival! Our island is being severely degraded to no end! You developers have hurt this island and have caused her environmental distress…..DO NOT GO FORWARD WITH THIS DEVELOPMENT!” and i filled it out with my information and email just in case they cough up the never to respond back. Anything for my Island!


  8. Colin L Beadon

    You don’t know yet ???? Barbadians hate trees. It is the first thing they make sure to knock down if they are going to do anything with a piece of land.
    No manner of talking and save the environment, and global heating. and how important trees are, gets through thick skulls. You’d think the churches would start to attempt to point out such things, but no, the churches are to busy dictating about the life to come, to hell with the earth we live on.
    And so it goes. People here badly need to read the book Collapse by Jared Diamond ‘How societies choose to fail or succeed’.

  9. El Pollo Loco

    @ Sunny Knight

    True, Mars is not sufficiently ready for colonization, but if elected, we the XLP (Xcellent Labour Party) will divert (err, set aside) the necessary funds to excute a manned (and wo-manned) mission to Mars!

    Just don’t ask us where we’ll get the funding from, ok? Okies.

  10. Colin L Beadon

    Developers don’t give a damn about trees, or the environment. They don’t even understand what you are talking about, as though you’re talking in Swahili, or in a language from Aldebaran in Taurus 68 light years away.
    All developers see is dollar signs and their own bank accounts, and the devastation they are causing an island, is too far beyond an intelligence horizon of such myopic minds.

  11. Karl Watson

    Do you know, there is a Tree Protection Act and A Bird Protection Act which have been in existence for over a hundred years, but have you ever heard of some one being prosecuted for felling trees or for shooting protected bird species. I haven’t and I doubt that the law has been enforced in its one hundred year existence. The sad thing about this level of destruction is that it is precisely that group of privileged people who should be leading by example…monied, educated elites…. who are the chief offenders.
    However, in general, Barbadians have been culturally disposed to see trees as obstacles to be removed. This point of view developed in the seventeenth century when the island was clear cut for sugar cane. The elites of that period sought to tame nature, to reduce it to manageable proportions, in essence to turn the entire island into a controlled garden, where bush or natural growth was anathema. We have inherited that view and so many Barbadians repeat the adage that “trees serve no purpose.” There is genuine surprise often expressed that sensitive/thoughtful people would attempt to save trees. “What’s the big deal, its just a tree.” As for the possibility that trees might be sentient …..forget it

  12. El Pollo Loco

    @ Colin L Beadon

    We’re not defending any developers or anything like that, but we the XLP think that they would have to care, even if it’s a lil’ bit. It’s in their economic interests to do so.

    If, as you say, developers only see their bank accounts, then they need to sell something that people want in order to make money.

    If they bulldoze and concrete everything, then don’t you think that potential buyers will eventually notice this and decide to purchase a property in a country that is more enviro-friendly (i.e., has lots of plants, trees and bush)?

    If that happens on a large enough scale, the developers lose.

    But why take aim at developers only? Surely the government of a country must be involved in granting permissions and what not, yes? Yes!

    A vote for the XLP (and a generous party contribution) will correct all of this!

  13. Sunny Knight

    If my take on the environmental issue was perceived as flippant, my deepest apologies; it was not purposed. Also, I was quite ignorant of the extant legislation covering LSCs (Lesser Sentient Creatures); good to know it. Man’s incapacity to demonstrate the most humane sentiments: kindness; courtesy; dignity; respect to his fellow man is a more significant failure, if you ask me. Not that wanton treatment of the environment and animal life does not trouble Sunny, it does. As a matter of fact, I wonder what a study of the relationship between environmental degradation and man’s inhumanity to man might reveal.

  14. curtis greenidge

    I am so happy that this was Highlighted as it broke my heart passing there two days ago and after all the hullabaloo about the trees in warrens I knew it was only a matter of time before I saw the devastation once again. It eats at me to see a people so ignorant where trees are concerned in this country as I live it every day – it seems as though we have a puplic who hate nature and love pavement – then I think all those boys all over this country sitting on “de” block where ever there is a tree the boys on “de” block are under it – Have they ever planted one?

  15. Rosemarie & Patrick

    I can’t believe that the government of Barbados would allow the cutting of trees, do they noe realise that we need them to clean the poulotion in the air. In Canada you have to have a permit to cut a tree, and it takes a long time as they have to inspect the tree to make sure that it can be cut, it has to be sick no other reason. No money can buy the removal. Another subject that need to be looked at is the garbage all over Barbados is there no pride in your country, teach the young ones. I am ashamed when I come back home and see the mess all over the island, people stand up and do something.

  16. Acy in California

    I feel so sorry for Barbados…


    Any developer is only allowed to develop based on permission received from the relevant authorities. It is these authorities that are allowing this to happen…..but remember that they are PUBLIC SERVANTS of every taxpayer in Barbados! Assuming that the plans on the Boarded Hall Green are the same that were submitted to the relevant departments (note the plural) and not one objected, allegedly as the act has been done, should the heads/decision makers of these departments not be held accountable?? A full statement must be demanded from us the TAXPAYERS who pay their salaries, as to why the Laws of Barbados appear to have been dis-regarded by allowing this to happen for what appears to be no just reason. Has there been collusion, self-interest put before national interest, dis-regard for the Laws of Barbados? I doubt that we will ever know because no-one will be held accountable.

  18. mary_clyne

    The Director off Country, town and planning needs firing , from the time the people at Four Seasons cut down all of those trees and he said that he never give them permission and then sat on his behind and did nothing about it,[ etc fine them , stop development , If it was a poor Barbadian we would have an injunction to stop building set on us before we could even blink] then he is incompetent
    Secondly Barbadians seem to hate trees and find every excuse to cut them down, have anyone notice that the majority off the fruit trees are gone, that is why a lot of birds have stop coming to our Island. AND. why Asthma is on the increase, the Doctors might like to say differently but Less trees more Carbon Dioxide in the Atmosphere.
    The Government and the Hotel Association along with the Unions needs to step in and STOP all these Condo from being built here our Hotels are empty because of the nonsense off letting people who do not live here buy a Condo then bring all their servants and food stuff, we need people in our Hotels not having their own houses here!
    Barbados depends on tourism and if we want our standard of living to continue the construction of Condos that Barbadians can not afford to buy ,plus the taking up a lot of agricultural lands needs to STOP

  19. Prince of Barbados/I LOOOOOOOOOVE BARBADOS!

    *Sigh*….There seems to be soooooooo many sensible Barbadians around the world who truly care for our little island but alas, those who act as though they are ignorant and lawless are those living on the island and most of them head the government!


  20. 54

    It will be a nice quiet development with a roundabout next to it and one of the busiest roads in Bim..eco that.

  21. just want to know

    Fearplay each and everyone of us has gated communities. My family home is fenced right around with a gate and a bell, anyone come to my gate has to ring a bell to get attention from inside the home. People have to protect themselves,so I don’t see a problem here. Just this week end with my gated house, there were two trespassers on my property had to call the police, and we were at home; so you see people not just have their homes gated, but have dogs to keep out intruders. Remember a couple weeks ago with all the slash tyres, these vehicles were in the peoples driveway, so don’t go bashing people when they are trying to protect them selves.

  22. FearPlay

    Sorry to hear of your property invasion and hope you and family re-adjust to the challenge of living in a changing Barbados “just want to know”. So, it’s back to Strathclyde and Belleville then. Was it right at that time? Remember, those folks wanted to feel safe and secure too or was there another reason why they didn’t want hob, nob and crew walking through their neighborhoods? Just want to know! Rich, poor, black or white, if we think we’re too good to mix with lesser folk, then there’s a problem and no excuse about safety and security will change the intent.

  23. macholder@yahoo.com

    We have a Earth Scrape Land Policy in Barbados. Town Planning could care less and politicians say one thing in opposition and play to another tune once elected. The arrogance of persons in leadership positions are depressing. The biggest problem corrupting Barbadian politics is the obligation to persons by politicians who take funds for campaigns.

  24. Colin L Beadon

    You’ve said it. I’m watching another house site being cleared on what was once cane land. They are pushing off the mold and the grass,and trucking it away instead of banking it one side to spread back when the house is completed. I’ve seen this happen too many times.
    Then the stupid owners have to buy back inferior soil from God only knows where, and this helps spread the giant snails. The replaced soil takes so long to break down where it will grow anything, and most usually, it is not top soil they think they are buying and getting back.

  25. HM

    …and people wonder why there is so much flooding etc.

  26. just like to know

    I don’t know why Strathclyde and Belleville weren’t open places as they are now, one thing I do know I don’t want anyone coming on my property or walking through it without permission; and I understand why people feel they want to be protected, and if that’s the only way so be it. My property is gated and if anyone come on it without permission the police will be involved.

  27. lowbattery

    so t&c planning did not ok the clear cutting for 4seasons… ok….
    question: where did all the mahogany from that clear cut go? to medford? lol!
    i t is believed there was rise in the electricity bill at BNB after they cut the trees outside the fairchild street office… i will say they have not been denuded again, since…
    not a priority.

  28. Blackbird

    1. New York City has a program called Million Trees NYC, where the goal is to plant and take care of 1 million trees across the city. It’s extremely depressing when so called developed countries like the U.S. are trying to recoup their environmental losses while in the name of “progress,” we destroy what makes the island so attractive to residents and visitors alike.
    2. When last have you seen any of the following trees that were so common when I was growing up? Mammy apple, gooseberry, fatpork, cashew, breadnut, sugar apple, soursop, paw-paw? It was just a matter of walking a few feet to pick these fruit from the trees. All the land where these trees grew is now home to “gated” communities with manicured lawns, 3-story homes and very little else. It’s problematic when we don’t feed ourselves anymore, rely on food imports and worse, ideas of what constitutes food from developed countries. Sorry folks, but chicken nuggets, fries, pizza, and hamburgers are not going to keep our children healthy.
    3. Finally, in the name of progress, we have developed this pattern of throwing away everything, including beautiful old mahogany furniture to buy cheap, unattractive, plastic versions. A few years ago, I came home to find that my mother had thrown out two rocking chairs that had been in the family for over 20 years because she claimed, “no one could fix them.” I almost cried. On a small island like ours, where is all of this garbage going? We are one of the most populated countries in the western hemisphere but due to shortsightedness, there hasn’t been enough conservation efforts. Do we really need 2, 3 cars per household? In 20 years, where will these old cars go? Our children are not being educated enough on how to preserve our flora and fauna. Instead, they are being taught how to become mindless consumers – it seems like how to buy s**t we don’t need has become our latest sport.

  29. blue heffner

    wow@islandproperties! forget about these numbskulls raping the land…tell me more! tell me more.

  30. BFP Robert Not Signed In

    Hi Blue Heffner

    We didn’t see that disgusting comment when somebody put it there in June, but now we have thanks to you, and we’ve removed it.

    Some people just don’t know where the lines are. Thanks for alerting us.


  31. Duppy Lizard

    Lets face it, Babrabdians in general do not care for the environment in which they live. The ones who have some money only want more and as long as somebody’s palm is being greased well, anything goes. People litter at will, there are no real recycling programs in place, no separation of garbage i.e. regular garbage, wet garbage (food scraps), paper, plastics and metal – it all goes the same place, the dump. Groynes are placed on the shore and beaches destroyed. There is an over abundance of cars. Cell phone towers are placed next to historic lighthouses. And we call ourselves a tourist destination.

  32. millertheanunnaki

    Spot on, mate. We might sound like a bleeding lot of whingers but we are only calling a spade a spade. Why place a mobile telephone mast right next to a lighthouse that can be refurbished and turned into a place of historical interest providing a spectacular panoramic view of the little island. The East point lighthouse is a case in point. Where there is No Vision, the country decays!

  33. what will they think of next

    I was made to understand that Tony Hoyos is a die-hard BLP supporter.

  34. Distruction

    Yes we lost 40 trees! Extremely sad, the development should be stopped and made an example off, the thing is we can plant more trees and in time they will mature also,
    But what the Hell is wrong with you people!!
    Did you not see that in the middle of those trees was a historic Plantation house! it was massive how could you all miss it? trees will grow again but our historic buildings are disappearing. All Hoyas cares about is money WHAT A VERY SAD MAN

  35. millertheanunnaki


    There is a law against the willful killing or destruction of a tree unless you are granted permission by the Authorities, possibly Town Planning.

    Do you really think that the developers would stupidly cut down these trees unless the authorities gave them the go-ahead? Just give me a few thousands and I’ll let it pass! You can always incorporate a plan to plant trees some other place in order to appease the green lobby. They are easily taken in by promises to make Barbados green not real action; don’t worry about them, most of them come from the few white intellectuals or the black middle class which can easily be persuaded by the threat of cutting off patronage or opportunities to make a living.

    Mr. D, T H is an accountant and business man whose only intent is to make loads of money and to hell with the environment despite all the eco-friendly, friends of the environment, green living propaganda bandied about. The dollar is King and don’t you forget that! (Tongue in cheek, I am!)

  36. Some foolish person in crystal heights cut down five beautiful Palm trees , they were short and very healthy. it is sad to see how the front of that house look now some people just don;t care..

  37. St George's Dragon

    Lots of moaning here, but few answers.
    How about:
    1. Having a Statutory list of “protected historic buildings” which cannot be demolished without approval. For high grade buildings, no alteration without approval. There are plenty of models in other countries to look at.
    2. Giving the National Trust a Statutory consultancy role on Town and Country Planning applications relating to historic buildings.
    3. Setting the fine for breaching No 1 above at a level which would hurt – say $2,500,000.
    4. Raising the fines for the unapproved removal of trees to a figure which would hurt – say $100,000 each.
    5. Giving the Town and Country Planners the power to actually look at the design and quality of a development, rather than just areas proposed, distances from boundaries etc (I don’t think they have this now…?).
    6. Increasing the resources of the Town and Country Planning Department and National trust so they can handle the extra workload.
    7. Raising the fees for Town and Country Planning applications to pay for No 6 above. Also, allow the T&C Planning Department keep the money raised through fines rather than it going into the general Government coffers.
    My first thoughts but as usual, no-one will do anything, it will all be talk until the whole of Barbados has been raped.

  38. millertheanunnaki

    @ St. George’s Dragon:

    Excellent suggestions and implementable without need for loads of resources. So the cry about the int’l recession can’t be used as an excuse.

    But you must understand the mindset of the local politicians:
    In order to progress you must get rid of old buildings and flora. The only way we (the political class and some bureaucrats) can get rich quick is to arrange some kickbacks. Restoration of old buildings does not attract the kind of money that can grease some officials’ palms and provide kickbacks through the award of contracts in the construction of new buildings.

    Your excellent recommendations above will put a damper on underhand dealings.

  39. Kammie Holder

    A tree takes about 15 years towards maturity to become an efficient Carbon sink. Trees around your home brings down the ambient temperature thus you have a cooler building.

  40. 114

    A few years back a new development emerged off the Highway around Maxwell. It was on a road called Mahogany Drive. I suppose it was because of the many mature mahogany trees that lined the road. Guess what…the developers cut down every single Mahogany tree, on “Mahogany” Drive.
    It baffles the mind!

  41. destruction

    St. George’s Dragon I totally agree with ya

  42. Treehugger

    Going Green what a bunch of BS all the green Tony Hoyos wanted to see was in his greedy little hands,. How can going green are falsely promoting an invest$$ment as a echo friendly development mean ripping trees from the earth? This is such a contradiction , I suppose Tony Hoyos , Pat Hoyos Island Properties tore down the fifty ( 50 trees) to make more room for housing units, By definitions of green the only green they have their eyes set on our US dollar bills . So sad when people do this with nature. Does barbados not already have a concrete jungle of high rises on such a small island the nature was your charm. Trees serve such a purpose to actually think you can dupe fools you are promotion going green and knock down not a few trees but 50 , He must think everyone can be snowballed and all are fools.

  43. Dorma Hoyos

    I am Dorma marie Hoyos ex wife of Tony Hoyos he has always been very careful with matters involving the welfare of animals and also nature. Let’s remember that in these times many people are out of work a protect like this could and would employ people to be able to provide food for their families. I know he would if he cut down trees put up trees this property sloped and had trees around the main house causing foundation problems

  44. Dorma Hoyos

    I meant to say a project such as this would bring much needed work to many unemployed people in Barbados , I assure that my ex would not cut down trees lightly as he is an avid supporter of eviromental issues . Dorma Marie Hoyos

  45. Dorma Hoyos

    Yes cautious is you are speaking of my ex would have been carefully evaluated and scrutinized . The home was yes an old plantation home sadly trees offer shade but sometimes can cause homes foundations structural problems. I can assure you that my ex if sadly some trees were cut down he did this with careful care, This place will generate income and also green in the sense of solar energy, and also modeled after recycling so lets be careful to judge Tony Hoyos my ex in such a critical manner. Dorma906@aol.com. I also remind people to not be so harsh because of the present jobs and future jobs this project will create in a economic hardship
    kindly Dorma Marie Hoyos