Parking problem

by Emmanuel Joseph

mullinsbeachvisitorsAn entrepreneur who has been working on Mullins Beach in St. Peter for more than 20 years, has identified a lack of parking for visitors or locals, as one of the major contributors to a reduction in the number of people who dine at the restaurant or enjoy the sea. Preferring only to be called Pete, the young man, who reported “seeing it all” over the years, told Barbados TODAY that the tourism planners were being “short sighted” in their policies of seeking to lure tourists to the island.

“They build expensive condominiums over there where a car park could otherwise be. When visitors come here they don’t have anywhere to park, so they move on. How you expect to get people here, when there is nowhere for them to park?” asked Pete, who currently works for Royal Westmoreland, the new owners of the restaurant.

An entrepreneur who has been working on Mullins Beach in St. Peter for more than 20 years, has identified a lack of parking for visitors or locals, as one of the major contributors to a reduction in the number of people who dine at the restaurant or enjoy the sea. Preferring only to be called Pete, the young man, who reported “seeing it all” over the years, told Barbados TODAY that the tourism planners were being “short sighted” in their policies of seeking to lure tourists to the island.

“They build expensive condominiums over there where a car park could otherwise be. When visitors come here they don’t have anywhere to park, so they move on. How you expect to get people here, when there is nowhere for them to park?” asked Pete, who currently works for Royal Westmoreland, the new owners of the restaurant.

“Royal Westmoreland sends their clients here,” said the employee who handles the rental of beach chairs and umbrellas. “I have seen this business (rentals) dropped by about 40 per cent or more.”

“You can see a lot of umbrellas and chairs now because we expected plenty people; but they have not come,” Pete told this newspaper as he stacked away the chairs in a designated area of the beach.

“Years ago, it would take you about 10 minutes to get from there (pointing to a wall about 50 meters away) to the restaurant; there were so many people on this beach. People used to come from all over Europe, not only England. We had a lot of people on this beach from overseas, but now they gone “missing” — the flights like they hit the Bermuda triangle.”

On another side of the beach, Robert Charmont runs a clothing business. Charmont has been operating it for seven years now, but his wife started it 33 years ago. “Very slow,” is how he described sales. “A lot of people who used to come to me from the Caribbean and outside the Caribbean, I am not seeing them anymore.

“For example, when you got to pay $800 for an airline ticket between St. Lucia to Barbados and you got bills to pay that are more critical, what you think people are going to do. They are going to stay home.

“The airfares are too high. St. Lucia is just a stone’s throw away from Barbados and you got to pay $800? It doesn’t make sense,” declared Charmont.

emmanueljoseph@barbadostoday.bb

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