On Thursday morning, June 30th, 2022, at 10am, The Ministry of Transport and Housing, led by Minister Jobeth Coleby-Davis, hosted a ground breaking event at the site of a new housing subdivision at Ocean Hole in Rock Sound, South Eleuthera.
The Rock Sound site is one of three visited by Minister Coleby-Davis and Member of Parliament for Central and South Eleuthera, Minister Clay Sweeting during the final quarter of 2021, as they scouted for areas on the island available, where affordable housing opportunities could be developed. Governor’s Harbour, and Hatchet Bay are also earmarked for upcoming housing developments.
Minister Sweeting on Thursday commented during the ground breaking, saying, “In my book, today will go down as one of the best days in my political career, because today we made good on our promise that speaks to a greater desire to meet the needs of the residents and descendants of Eleuthera, to provide affordable housing, and to also increase the availability of opportunities that Eleutherans have access to. We have a long way to go, but we are intent on ensuring that the quality of living on the Family Islands is improved, and that Family Islanders have fair access to opportunities throughout our archipelago.”
He continued, “My colleagues and I in the House of Assembly are working together as a team, and this could not have happened without team effort… When the Minister of Transport and Housing announced her aggressive affordable homes construction program, I could not think of a better place to build homes than the beautiful ‘Island of Freedom’. My team sprang into action to identify areas of suitable land, owned by the government. We made enquiries on ownership and availability and found three locations – Hatchet Bay, Governor’s Harbour, and right here where we are sitting today (Rock Sound)… After deliberations – to create enough housing, and an extension to the township of Hatchet Bay, we successfully negotiated the title transfer of 100 acres of land to the Ministry of Housing and Transport, and we hope to begin construction on homes there (in Hatchet Bay) within a year. The Minister of Housing will also sell affordable lots at the same location.
“We are also assessing Governor’s Harbour in Central Eleuthera, and we are hopeful to have the current title issues resolved to expand the construction of affordable homes there as well… Here in Rock Sound today, we have created the opportunity to expand government services through affordable homes here, to the island of Eleuthera for the first time in our history of this magnitude. These will be available for purchase by Eleutherans, and will be built by Eleutherans. Eleutheran residents and descendants will have first preference to qualify, and thus the mortgage fair will be hosted tomorrow… If the opportunity is missed tomorrow, residents can apply online and register to become a homeowner… Eleuthera is poised for revitalization, and everything that is needed for the island to grow is in position. We only need to work together… Throughout government, there is a unified theme to build our Family Islands.”
Minister of Transport and Housing, Jobeth Coleby-Davis, in her remarks addressed to community members of Central and South Eleuthera, in attendance to mark the significant event, shared, “My team and I, we’ve worked so hard to make sure that we are committed to the promises of the government… In our ‘blueprint for change’, the Davis led administration committed to a housing program that will expand the path to homeownership for many Bahamians. Today’s ground breaking is the continuation of our Family Island Housing Initiative, and the start of the fulfillment of the pledge for the island of Eleuthera… Prime Minister Davis gave instructions for building houses in Central and South Eleuthera, and the Ministry of Housing is here to carry out those instructions… I assure all Eleutherans, inclusive of the residents of North Eleuthera – you will not, you have not, and we cannot leave you behind. My ministry is aggressively looking to provide affordable housing solutions for your community…
“We are not doing anything special for you in Eleuthera, we are simply doing what governments should be doing. We are not interested in PR stunts, our actions today are prioritized, focused, and meaningful. Today our affordable homes program consist of two-bedroom and two bathroom homes, and three bedroom and two bathroom homes From the onset my team and I were on the ground here in Eleuthera to identify land for the construction of homes, all with the view to determining an access and what was needed to facilitate our housing agenda.”
Prime Minister the Hon. Philip Davis was also in Eleuthera on Thursday morning to attend the historic ground breaking event in Rock Sound in support of the efforts and strides being made by Ministers Coleby-Davis and Sweeting and weighed in on the impact of this step, saying, “Today’s ground breaking ceremony of the Ocean Hole subdivision is yet another example of our government’s commitment to empowering Bahamians. This expansion of 100 additional lots forms part of our strategy to ensure provision of affordable homes and housing throughout the country.”
The ground breaking event was followed by an Open House Fair, hosted the next morning, on Friday, July 1st, 2022, beginning at 9am until 3pm, at the Local Government Complex in Rock Sound. People interested in applying for a homesite, were able to speak with a comprehensive team, as representatives were in place from the Ministry of Transport and Housing, the Department of Housing, as well as the Bahamas Mortgage Corporation. “Our one-stop-shop initiative will aid in an easy, seamless process to home ownership,” said Minister Coleby-Davis.
A variety of home models (drawings) were on display, for the information of the applicants. Residents were also encouraged to pre-sign up and register at (mothbahamas.com). Basic documents needed for application included: identification (passport and voter’s card), NIB smart card, a job letter, payslip – no more than 3 months old, current loans print out, proof of insurance, and pre-approval from a financial institution.
For further information about the Ocean Hole housing development, or upcoming opportunities in Governor’s Harbour and Hatchet Bay, Eleutherans can call: 242-302-5816 or send an email to (email@example.com).