Government has begun plans to revitalise urban spaces in T&T.
In a statement the Ministry of Planning and Development said projects will be developed using public private partnerships, adding that some of the proposed sites include The Memorial Plaza Project, Salvatori Building Project, Piccadilly Development Project, The Foreshore Green Park Development, City Gate Development and Colville Street Development – The PowerGen Site.
The ministry said this is in keeping with one of its key budget items for 2021.
It added it work with UDeCOTT “ to create a rebirth” of the capital through collaboration and implementation of policies and plans to recognise the historical district in which the Red House is located as well as redevelopment of the commercial centre through mixed use development of residential and commercial infrastructure, pedestrianized areas, smart technology and renewable energy infrastructure.
This, the ministry added, will also improve local economic viability and provide a quality environment for tourists and residents.
The Town and Country Planning Division (TCPD) will also play a key role in developing these plans which will have significant effects on the land use policy and development standards for Port-of-Spain, the ministry said.
It said the TCPD is currently addressing concerns of developers and applicants for planning permission.
“Of particular concern are building coverage, site coverage, building height, and urban density. This will entail re-zoning areas in Port-of-Spain to accommodate the demands of a growing city,” the ministry said.
It added proposals are also being considered for the current allowances of up to six floors in midtown and downtown Port-of- Spain to be increased, facilitating more compact development and allowing for more inclusion of vertical spaces.
“The TCPD intends to simplify the adoption and adaptation of smarter planning paradigms to encourage residential, commercial, cultural and financial development in the city and its suburbs.
“In keeping with smart growth principles, the TCPD is pursuing compact neighbourhood design – especially critical where land is limited,” the ministry said.
It added this also involves more structured vertical parking to replace surface parking.
In addition, the TCPD will accommodate designs facilitating more “walkable” neighbourhoods and the use of bicycles – hence promoting active and healthy lifestyles, cleaner air and planning for people rather than for vehicles, the ministry added.