Saint Lucia National Trust’s open letter to DCA regarding demolition works at the Castries prison

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Saint Lucia National Trust’s open letter to DCA regarding demolition works at the Castries prison
Demolition works at Castries Prison prior to injunction.
Demolition works at Castries Prison

(PRESS RELEASE VIA SNO) – AN OPEN LETTER TO:

Development Control Authority
Graeham Louisy Administrative Building
The Waterfront
Castries

It was brought to the attention of the Saint Lucia National Trust (SLNT) that plans are being advanced to demolish the Castries Prison, formerly the Royal Gaol.

Upon investigation, we discovered that demolition works have commenced on the periphery of the structure but we are unable to verify that these works are approved by the Development Control Authority (DCA). If it is indeed the case, we call on the DCA to issue a stop order to all works on the site until the required applications are submitted, considered and approved.

The Castries Prison is perhaps the oldest structure in Castries and therefore of historic significance. It tells an important, albeit dark side of our history, but one we should not forget, for to do so will cause us to perpetuate the societal ills its function attempted to address.

Demolition works taking place at the Castries Prison

We understand that the proposed demolition is part of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court Halls of Justice project funded by the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB). We laud the Government of Saint Lucia, OECS Supreme Court and the Caribbean Development Bank for this important initiative. In so doing, we urge adherence to the laws that the Courts exist to uphold. To this end, and in the context of government’s stated commitment to transparency, we urge the DCA to:

– stop any further works on the Castries Prison site, including the demolition of the Castries Prison until the required applications are submitted, considered and approved;

– take account of the historic significance and structural integrity of the Castries Prison when considering any application to demolish the structure;

– require the applicant to produce indicative plans for the redevelopment of the site to enable meaningful consideration to integrating the prison building and adjacent prisoner burial grounds into the planned project. The building served an important function in the national justice system and opportunities to link this history with the future of the justice system should factor into the DCA’s decision on this matter; and

– engage heritage conservation organisations in discussions prior to making a decision on any application it may receive to demolish and redevelop the Castries Prison.

We urge the Authority to take these matters into consideration in its deliberations.

Saint Lucia National Trust
September 7, 2018.

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13 COMMENTS

  1. Uhhhhh uh. Government officials do you guys need help breaking this crap down. I’m available to help for free!!!
    Nonsense

    (2)(1)

  2. Whilst I respect the concerns of SLNT, we should also consider that many of these old buildings are a breeding ground for mould which increases the chances of occupants developing health conditions, which to my mind is alot more detrimental than keeping a structure (even if it is unusable) for historical purposes. We do not have space in castries to accommodate business expansions, and we are a continuously developing country. Can the SLNT suggest an alternative spot? and so what purpose would the delapidated elephant of a prison building serve to the city? These are just my thoughts.

    (1)(2)

  3. Why are trying to preserve the site? Show us the benefit-cost analysis in support of preservation, please. Will somebody or something now have to pay for the delay inserted? Who? The taxpayers?

    (3)(0)

  4. Why is there a continuous battle with EVERYTHING that the government of the day wants to do. While some can be justified, others make no sense. As if it appears like ppl are just out to go against everything.

    (3)(0)

  5. I’ve never read such garbage in my life before...
    That building should have been bulldozed years ago and a more mordern meaning structure erected... nothing but mold,asbestos and rats in there causing a hazard to law enforcement officers working in the immediate vicinity

    (4)(0)

  6. People have a problem with everything. Perhaps I don't appreciate history, but tell me preserve this and that to what end. Give me a break.

    (3)(0)

  7. This sounds very very political to me. Why must everything in this country be politicized? Couldn't SLNT have written directly to the DCA, rather than going through the electronic media first? If a satisfactory response isn't forthcoming at that point, then I would understand the need to broaden your audience. But this makes absolutely no sense to me. It actually sounds like they're nitpicking here. It's an old, non-functional BLOODY PRISON for crying out loud!!! Aren't there more important issues that the SLNT should be focusing on, like let's say maybe actually coming up with intelligent methods of increasing their cash flow? IJS

    (5)(1)

  8. SLNT is meddling in what does not concern it. There was a public toilet over the waters edge in Soufriere, what did the National Trust do to preserve this toilet. Let's face it, the toilet had been there for a very long time. It should have been preserved as a national heritage site. Instead the national trust did nothing to save such long standing shit hole beneath the pitons.

    (3)(0)

  9. For so long this derelict has been an eye sore and the trust never saw it for to make a statement.

    POLITICKING TO THE MAX

    SMDH

    (4)(0)

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