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BLDC: development may not be at Marginal Wharf

BLDC put out invites for expressions of interest from potential developers for the Ships (Marginal) Wharf area. The site is currently run down and not in great shape (File photo by Akil Simmons)

A subcommittee has been formed to finalise the application process for development that was slated for Marginal Wharf.

According to Arthur Jones, the chairman of the Bermuda Land Development Company (BLDC) subcommittee, the board has not committed to redeveloping Marginal Wharf, saying that the project could potentially take place on any of the Company’s sites.

Mr Jones, who has sat on the BLDC’s board since 2011, told The Royal Gazette: “To look at one piece of land in isolation when there is the whole of Southside to consider would be limited.

“We are taking a holistic view rather than just processing it in isolation — from a planning and land use point of view that probably wouldn’t make a lot of sense.

“It’s not really a change of heart; it is an expression of interest process. It was not a request for a proposal on a specific piece of land or a specific use.

“When you look at any project, not just the BLDC, you have to look at what is around, what would be affected by it, what’s involved.

“There is everything from the infrastructure by way of utilities, by way of water, etc — you can’t look at it in isolation.”

The BLDC subcommittee, made up of Mr Jones, Kai Musson and Philip Perinchief, is considering a shortlist of eight development applications.

Mr Jones said the subcommittee was pushing ahead with the process and that it would be completed as quickly as possible. “We are going through the applications until the process is complete, which it almost is. We are trying to get through it as quickly as we can. We had a very high quality level of submissions, which was nice to see.

“We are certainly not delaying the process — we have had the Christmas period to get through and you have to get a lot of people together at the same time with people’s schedules.

“The submissions will have to go through the public, even if it’s just through the planning process, but I am sure there will be more involvement than that.

“Our job is to do the best for the BLDC and the people of Bermuda, and that is what we are doing.”