Nassau Bahamas – -August 21, 2011 – – (www.hospitalitybusinessnews.com) The Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court of Appeal overturned a lower court ruling Friday (August 12), paving the way for a long disputed plan to build a luxury resort, golf course and Marina on 659 acres at Beef Island to move forward.
The Court of Appeal found, amongst other things, that Hans Creek was not validly declared to be a protected area, and by extension, the decision of the Minister to approve the Group’s proposed development of the BVI Project granted to Quorum in January 2007, was not illegal. The decision of, and the order granted by, the judge of the High Court was set aside. As a result, the Minster’s planning approval of the development of the BVI Project remains valid.
After approval of the project was initially granted, Virgin Islands Environmental Council (VIEC)sued the developer and the BVI Government claiming that the area to be developed was a protected area. One of the main points of contention is the development of a Golf Course.
According to a company release “The directors of the Company believe that the above Appeal Orders permitting the reinstatement of the Minister’s planning approval of the development of the BVI Project might positively aid the obtaining of the necessary funding by Quorum for the development of the BVI Project, subject to the prevailing economic climate and conditions of the property markets. As the owner and developer of the BVI Project, the Group is very cognizant of the protection of areas of ecological importance, including but not limited to Hans Creek as a fisheries protected area, and have every intention of supporting the continued efforts of the Group in the protection and maintenance of environmentally important regions in areas in which the Group has projects.”
Shareholders of Quorum include Applied Development Holdings Limited of Hong Kong. At one point IGY Marinas of New York was also a shareholder but it is not known if they still are.