Thu | Dec 9, 2021

Proven REIT brings high-rise residential complex to Ocho Rios

Published:Friday | October 15, 2021 | 12:09 AMCarl Gilchrist - Gleaner Writer
A graphical representation of the SOL Harbour high-rise residential complex to be undertaken by Proven REIT Limited in Ocho Rios, St Ann.
A graphical representation of the SOL Harbour high-rise residential complex to be undertaken by Proven REIT Limited in Ocho Rios, St Ann.

A lready dotted with luxury apartments, the hillside overlooking Ocho Rios is to be further developed with the construction of a multistorey residential complex, with construction set to begin by year end.

In its first investment in the resort town, Proven REIT Limited, a real estate investment trust, is catering to the residential market with the SOL Harbour development, which will consist of two seven-storey buildings.

Mayor of St Ann’s Bay Sydney Stewart confirmed that approval has been given for the construction of the complex, to be sited in the vicinity of Mystic Ridge Resort, which offers an extensive view of the resort town of Ocho Rios.

While not divulging the overall cost for the development, Adam Hill, one of the developers, disclosed that the project will begin in the coming weeks and consists of 144 studio units and 12 two-bedroom apartments.

“We’re still finalising some of the details in terms of starting construction at this time, which is why we haven’t done a formal launch just yet,” Hill told the Financial Gleaner.

“We’re aiming to have that done within the course of this month, so there should be more information on the development available early next month. We’ll be looking at the end of next year for completion,” he added.

The 600-square-foot studio units have a pre-construction starting price of US$169,000 (approximately $25 million), and the two-bedroom apartments, measuring 1,250 square feet, start at US$370,000 (around $55 million).

Despite the construction of several large hotels in the Ocho Rios area over the past two decades, boasting hundreds of rooms geared at the tourism market, the construction of multistorey apartments for residential purposes has been minimal over the period.

While welcoming the development, President of the St Ann Chamber of Commerce, Vana Taylor, says she is repeating her call to the St Ann Municipal Corporation to put a plan in place to facilitate the orderly development of Ocho Rios.

Taylor says, currently, traffic is a nightmare in the resort town and several infrastructure issues, including drainage, need to be addressed before the municipal corporation grants any more building permits for commercial activities.

“We are not against development, please don’t get us wrong; all we’re saying, it needs to be put in a structured plan, it needs to be organised,” said Taylor. “We are more than concerned that there is not a plan being put in place, and the chamber has been asking for it — for a plan to be put in place before all these new commercial entities are approved.”

Taylor’s call comes against the backdrop of other developments already taking place in Ocho Rios, and others in the pipeline.