Bermudiana Beach funicular plans approved
Plans to install a funicular and other amenities at the Bermudiana Beach Resort have been approved, despite objections from environmental groups.
The Development Applications Board formally approved the application in a meeting on July 7 after it was recommended for approval by a technical officer.
The technical officer’s report said: “Since approval was granted to convert the residential structures to a tourism use, it has been anticipated additional amenity features would be constructed within that portion of the property zoned coastal reserve, both on top of and below the cliff face, to take advantage of the south shore location.
“In addition, it was also anticipated access to the beach would be constructed, overcoming the difference in elevation.”
The officer added that while there had been minor modifications to the proposal since an earlier plan was approved, it was “all in keeping with the spirit and intent of the original approval”.
The report concluded: “The works comprising Phase 2 are necessary to provide additional amenity for the condo hotel and to further stabilise the cliff.
“In the context of the change of use for the site, the proposed development is appropriate for the site, in keeping with tourism policies, and will allow for the enjoyment of the land and is therefore supported for approval.”
The planning application proposed the construction of a funicular to carry guests from the Warwick resort to a beach at the base of a nearby cliff, along with other amenities.
Similar plans were previously approved for the site in 2014, but lapsed before work could begin.
Both the Bermuda National Trust and the Bermuda Audubon filed objections to the plan, but Colin Campbell, director and senior architect at OBM Ltd, said their fears were unfounded.
David Burt, the Premier said in the House of Assembly earlier this month construction is expected to finish in April 2022 and the resort would open soon after.
He said: “Following the announcement of a tranche of $10 million, supported by a sovereign guarantee, pledged to proceed with necessary development at this property, due diligence has now been completed, the development loan approved and work on the additional elements of the project will soon commence.
“These works include additional rooms and a series of guest amenities which when completed will make it suitable for paying guests, representing the newest addition to the tourism stock of guest accommodation.”