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Barbados should soon have an approved amended National Physical Development Plan designed to build resilience and ensure economic and physical growth.
The disclosure was made by Dr William Duguid, senior minister in the Office of the Prime Minister with responsibility for the planning system, capital works and development projects.
“This updated policy framework envisions Barbados as a nation in which resilient, sustainable economic and physical growth are balanced with conservation and restoration of irreplaceable resources, rural working landscapes, cultural heritage and natural heritage,” Dr Duguid said as he addressed the opening ceremony for the 11th Caribbean Urban Forum 2022 at the Frank Collymore Hall, under the theme Beyond COVID – Recovery, Renewable, Resilience.
He also described it as an opportunity to support Barbados’ transformation to a green economy, plan sustainably for the needs of future generations of Barbadians, and for the provision of infrastructure.
Minister Duguid described an updated national physical development plan for Barbados as “an important corollary” in articulating Government’s strategic objectives for development; providing land-use policy direction and establishing the framework within which development applications could be appropriately assessed.
A physical development plan sets out land zoning, the types of buildings that can go into various areas and gives general policy guidelines for how you develop different spaces.
The minister used the example of Warrens, St Michael, and noted that the original physical development plan would have outlined how it was to be developed.
“You would see how Warrens has become a new town centre now. It sets up the Ramsar area within the swamp. It sets and designates various areas of the community [based on] how we want to design it and see the environment shaped,” he said.
He noted that consultants were currently working on the final details for the plan, and once signed off on, it would be laid in Parliament.