Objection To Disposal Of Beach Access 60905/204 (Pt)

By Hon. Dr. Royal S. Robinson, MBE

In accordance with the Crown Land Ordinance S 43 (1), I hereby lodge my objection to the disposal a part of the beach access, which is part of the road that is contained in parcel 60905/204, which contains a total acreage of 4.22 ac. The basis of my objection are as follows:

1. Provident Ltd had been granted a total of 4,000.00 acres of land in Providenciales in the mid 1960 to create residential and commercial lots for sale. In order for that sale to take place, a number of subdivisions were created to achieve that goal.

2. A number of those subdivisions were created along Grace Bay which has a significantly large stretch of white sandy beach.

3. Between the Developer, Provident Ltd, the Ministry of Natural Resources, the Departments of Planning and Land Survey, it was determined that a number of beach accesses, at pre-determined intervals would be created and when the subdivision was completed and registered, those parcels that contained the beach accesses and the roads would be transferred to the Crown for the benefit of the people of the Turks and Caicos Islands as well as visitors to our shores.

4. From the time of Adjudication, that there would not be any private beaches in the Turks and Caicos Islands. The beaches were public, but it made no sense for the beach to be public and the public could not enjoy it, if there was no defined public access to it.

5. In this particular subdivision of 60905, four parcels were transferred to the Crown on or about13/8/2007, 201 with an area of 0.81 ac; 202 with an area of 3.25 ac; 203 with an area of 2.40 ac and 204 with an area of 4.22 ac.

6. If you were to take the 0.22 acre as a percentage or proportion of the 4.22 ac, then it seems small. However, when you narrow it down to the “hammer head” of the beach access, then you are taking away practically half of that space. That space was designed so that parking of vehicles and turning around could take place. Cutting that off significantly reduces the number of parking spaces available as well as the ability to turn around effectively.

7. We have seen a number of beach accesses developed by the adjacent property developers. What we have seen is that the design is of such a character, that it give the casual onlooker the feeling that the access is private property and the person would be trespassing if he tries to access the beach access.

8. The Tender Notice is deceptive in its narrative and it content is different in a material particular from that of the proprietors of 60905/16 in that the proprietor clearly stated that he requires it for private use, which precludes the public from accessing that piece of land. The proprietor was of the full knowledge as to the shape of his land when he bought it because he had to be presented with a surveyor’s Boundary Certificate as part of his closing documents. I am attaching a copy of a recent survey that I had done that shows that there is already an encroachment on the beach access. I am also attaching a copy of the applicant’s proposal which clearly indicates his intent.

9. We are aware of the constant stress being put on the ability of persons on Providenciales in particular from utilizing beach and the access to it by unscrupulous land owners who have adopted the posture that the beach is their private domain and access to it by the ordinary Turks and Caicos Islander must be prohibited at all cost. This application, when taken in its global perspective, would in effect create the situation where the Turks and Caicos Islander is prohibited from gaining access to the beach.

10. This application make a nonsense of the process of setting aside for posterity a beach access that was in private hands, transferred to the Crown, for and on behalf of the people, and not at this time, taken away from the very people that it was created for.

11. There is no one in this country that has an equal knowledge of the history of this and other beach accesses as I have, save and except Bengt Soderqvist of Provident Ltd. In my career, I have been Chief Land Surveyor, Director of Planning, Registrar of Lands as well as Permanent Secretary for the Ministry of Natural Resources among many other things.
I therefore end where I began in that I am totally of the view that disposal of this piece of the beach access is unwarranted, unnecessary and counter-productive to the rationale for which it was transferred to the Crown.

* Cc H E The Governor; Hon. Premier; Hon. Attorney General; Hon. Leader of the Opposition

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