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#237091 - 05/04/07 02:03 AM Development of a new barge dock?
Marty Offline
Chamber Members, Tom Cotton & Steve Adams, emailed to express their concern and find out more about what seems to be a new barge docking facility being created South of town and across from the Hol Chan Marine Park. Several pictures were sent of the mangroves being cut and preparations being made for the new construction. Terry Colbert shared that the paper had a comprehensive article on the barges moving from the Town Park Dock to a barge docking facility on the south end of the island owned by Varella. Terry stated that the article went on the say that the Eiley’s (Caribbean Queen) would not be moving there and would be building a new docking facility one mile pass that on their private property. The Town Council had approved the move to the Varella dock to get the barges out of the center of town. But the article went on to say that the Town was not aware of any dredging, and any permission to dredge would have to come from Belmopan.

A discussion ensued, with many strong opinions being expressed about the damage to Hol Chan, both from the dredging as well as the increased barge traffic. As the boats move or turn the barges there is a large amount of silt generated especially during low tide, so any silt created during that the time the tide is going out would be drawn right through the Hol Chan channel. The discussion went on to express the short-sightedness of just moving the barge problem further down the island and now just affecting a new group of people. There are resorts and private homes all along that area, and everyone knows that the front of the island is rapidly developing beyond a commercial barge enterprise. This would have been an excellent time to make use of the 3 million dollar port that was built years ago. Unfortunately at the time the port was built, smaller barges were being used, and the companies insist that it cannot serve the purpose for which it was intended without more docking space and dredging.

We will follow up, and hopefully have more information by the next meeting.


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#237098 - 05/04/07 04:06 AM Re: Development of a new barge dock? [Re: Marty]
SimonB Offline
How much runway room does a C-130 require? How many trips a day would it take to fulfill the needs of the island? If each barge operator leased 1 trip a day could they move the essantials at the same cost? I understand that there are many items (construction) that couldn't be fulfilled but what about a cargo terminal at the south end of the airstrip.

Just throwing out Sh*t.

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#237100 - 05/04/07 04:25 AM Re: Development of a new barge dock? [Re: SimonB]
Chris Offline
"If each barge operator leased 1 trip a day could they move the essantials at the same cost?"

no, not even close.

Runway is long enough for a fully loaded C130 to land but not strong enough.

Construction materials probably make up 95% of the weight and 80% of the volume of island cargo so adding a C130 would not solve the present barge siting problem. It would, rather, create rather obvious problems itself.

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#237124 - 05/04/07 03:30 PM Re: Development of a new barge dock? [Re: Chris]
JZB Offline
"..But the article went on to say that the Town was not aware of any dredging, and any permission to dredge would have to come from Belmopan"

The mayor and our area representative have both inspected the site. To say they know nothing of dredging is total BS. They would be lucky to get 2' of water 100' off shore.

There was a handful of barges plus tugs in the new marina just the other day, so to claim they can't get their barges in, is also BS. It appears to me the barge owners just don't want to pay the Port of Belize fees for docking.

What is going to happen when the cobblestoning is done all the way to Victoria House as planned. These trucks are going to be pounding the pavement all day every day destroying 2 miles of road.

This is absolutely one of the dumbest things the town has cooked up. (If they are even the ones pulling the strings)

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#237126 - 05/04/07 03:55 PM Re: Development of a new barge dock? [Re: JZB]
kathyw Offline
Not only will they be destroying 2 miles of road, they will also be destroying property. The lots they have to cross to get to their property has no easement. When these properties were sub divided many many years ago,there was no provision for easements. There are (8) parcels that go from sea to lagoon. We the property owners, paid for and put in a golf cart road thru our property so other owners South of us could pass. This is for golf carts, taxi's and electric repair only. Their trucks will have to cross our property a hundred times a day to get to and from town. Now tell me, who in San Pedro would want or put up with all these trucks going thru their property without a good fight? I don't care how much thought goes into looking for your propety, there is no way to even think something like a dredge would set up house next door on the beach. If it would even be a possibility, wouldn,t your realtor would have to disclose that to you?

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#237128 - 05/04/07 04:00 PM Re: Development of a new barge dock? [Re: JZB]
cracked up Offline
A C130 at max gross wt (155,000#) requires 6,300 ft.

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#237129 - 05/04/07 04:01 PM Re: Development of a new barge dock? [Re: JZB]
Amanda Syme Offline
I have always pondered a few things concerning the barge business.

How much is their trade license?

How much money do they contribute to the road improvement projects since their dump trucks and other heavy machinery cause a lot of wear and tear and damage to the roads?

How much money does the town collect for port/docking fees when they were tied to the municipal pier and at the end of a public street?

Yes, we NEED their services. We pay high transportation bills to these service providers. Yes we will need their services for many years to come. But are they giveng back to us?

There would be absolute mayhem if the barge operators decided to strike. But does that mean that you and I need to continually dip into our pockets to repair the damage caused by these businesses?

Did these companies contribute to the building of the south side back marina? Can they now contribute to bringing the port up to their standards?

There comes a time in a politician's life when his/her decisions will make or break a reputation. Well, it looks like the time has come.

However, if a stance is made to demand that the barge companies use the back port - we must all be prepared to face the consequences if the operators dig their heels in.

I am already nervous sharing roads with the dump trucks. When we have a 2 mile straightaway paved road - watch out!!

Anyway, as I said before and will reiterate now - we need the barges. What are we going to propose to fix the new problem before it develops?

This is a town concern, not just a Hol Chan south island neighbourhood concern.


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#237130 - 05/04/07 04:18 PM Re: Development of a new barge dock? [Re: Amanda Syme]
elbert Offline
Go Amanda
_________________________
The Dive Shops Daily Blog
http://scubalessonsbelize.blogspot.com/

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#237131 - 05/04/07 04:22 PM Re: Development of a new barge dock? [Re: Amanda Syme]
kathyw Offline
Amanda is right, this is a town concern and yes we do need the barges. What I don't understand is, Why do these barge people dictate what they are going to do? Millions of dollars were spent on a beautiful new road and marina. Barges are using it now, so why not others? Money is the answer. They don't want to pay to use it.
To put the barg location South you can bet they are paying over a million dollars to set it up. Property cost $300,000.00, then they have to pay to cut down the mangroves, dredge, build a road on the property (with hundreds of yards of fill) and set up. Why would they pay that much money for a location that they say is only tempory until they are able to use the new one in back? Tempory was only 16 years at their present location

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#237132 - 05/04/07 04:29 PM Re: Development of a new barge dock? [Re: kathyw]
JZB Offline
Since most of us agree that this is a bad move, How can we stop them?

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