Why didn’t Barbados obtain completion guarantees backed with performance deposits and bonds?
Our political class, along with Harlequin and other developers, left Bajans holding the bag!
by Old Cutter
What a mess we have with abandoned and “on hold” construction sites and failed projects throughout this country. There is a reason for this and it is not “economic slowdowns” or “unforeseen circumstances”.
“We have these numerous failed project disasters littering our coasts because our DLP and BLP governments allowed unfettered development of our beautiful island by almost anyone that showed up.”
Politicians’ offshore accounts are fat and happy
Our elected representatives stuffed bags of cash into offshore accounts of their “consulting” companies but never acted to protect Barbados from shaky developers.
Our political class never imposed standard contract conditions like performance guarantees and deposits. The big developers hired DLP and BLP friends and family as ‘consultants’ in exchange for building permissions.
“Everybody knows how this place works, and why the political class never voted for Integrity Legislation or assets declarations since Bajan independence almost 50 years ago.”
Harlequin Resorts is just one more failed developer, but they fell in a big way and are worth looking at closely…
As the broader Harlequin Resorts debacle carries on in the courts we see Harlequin suing accountants Wilkins Kennedy and WK countering with accusations of their own, and many other court battles in various stages.
Somewhere in all of that there is a book figure for the value of Harlequin’s assets, including the abandoned Merricks Resort site in Barbados.
Whatever that book figure is for Merricks Resort, a visit to the abandoned construction site reveals a rotting garbage dump that is undoubtedly far less of an asset due to the demolition and environmental cleanup that would be necessary prior to any new activity. Barbados Free Press covered this story a year and a half ago, and the deterioration is easy to see when we compare the photos then and now.
In the Caribbean like any other tropical / sea-salt air environment, it doesn’t take long for an abandoned structure to come to ruin. Exposed rebar wicks corrosive salt into foundations. Rot and insects make quick work of any exposed wood. Sewer and water pipes soon fill with dirt and become homes to all kinds of creatures. Leave a construction site unprotected and sitting idle in Barbados for a short three or four months in the rainy season and you’ll find that it is probably beyond economic salvage.
That’s what we have at Merricks and many other abandoned developments throughout Barbados – dangerous weakened structures that are now good for nothing.
You know that some accountant’s report probably values the Merricks as ‘partially completed’ or ‘initial starting’ but that is incorrect: it is a falling down, rotting eyesore that detracts from the value of the island.
So let us talk the truth about two issues as this island tries to recover economically…
#1: The political class and elected and appointed government officials must stop thinking of themselves, and have as their only consideration the good of Barbados and Bajans.
#2: The endemic corruption in Bajan politics and government administration will never be overcome without Freedom of Information and Integrity Legislation. Successive DLP and BLP governments continually promise these laws and fail to deliver. They tantalize the populace with draft legislation and then postpone it until election time, then after being re-elected do the same thing again.
The DLP and BLP politicians and political class are beyond hope, beyond redemption.
Merricks is just one more illustration that the rot goes deep, and has been there for a long time.
Thanks to St George’s Dragon for the photos!
Taken September 2014…
(click on photo for large size)
Have a look at the large size photos. See the rot and deterioration!