Freeport, Bahamas – With the opening of the new Downtown Welcome Centre and Bus Transit Station, officials of The Grand Bahama Port Authority, Limited (GBPA) are pleased with the increased police presence the facility brings to the area.
Referring to the Downtown Turnaround Project launched by GBPA in April 2009, GBPA-President, Ian Rolle, described the new multi-purpose building as an integral part of the project.
“Last year, we unveiled a three-phase plan that included a full-scale clean-up of downtown Freeport, the introduction of new landscaping, signage, benches, lighting and other aesthetically pleasing features into the area,” explained Rolle.
“As we revitalize the city’s centre, our focus is on encouraging business development. We want to create opportunities for greater economic activity and provide an environment in which businesses can flourish,” he added.
Primary aspects of the 1495 square foot handicap accessible building include a jointly-shared Royal Bahamas Police Force and Road Traffic Division satellite station, restrooms and snack shops.
Rolle was enthusiastic about the partnership. “Onsite presence of Police Force and Road Traffic officers bodes well for the safety of all parties involved,” he stated.
The location of law enforcement officers in these new premises follows on the heels of a GBPA presentation of two state-of-the art Segways to the Royal Bahamas Police Force late last year. Donation of the new two-wheeled, self-balancing electronic vehicles greatly added to police mobility in patrolling the town’s center.
Under the oversight of GBPA’s Building and Development Department, construction on the new Downtown Welcome Centre and Bus Transit Station began in June of this year, by local contractors, Michael Swann and Larry Robinson of Quality Construction Limited. The building features a unique Bahamian architectural design.
On-hand for an official walkthrough of the facilities were members of GBPA, Police Force and Road Traffic officials, along with representatives from the various Downtown, Bus, Taxi and Ground Operators Associations.
As facets of the Downtown Turnaround Project aim to breathe new life into the city center, ‘Port’ officials are already planning a holiday concert to be held on December 11, in the facility’s parking lot. The program will feature a local high school marching band, various choirs, carolers and other musicians. Food donations will also be made to the Red Cross and Salvation Army for needy families on the island.