An application from the Ministry of Tourism to build public restrooms at Starfish Point is drawing resistance from nearby property owners who say the proposed development would exacerbate existing issues of excessive noise and other nuisances.
The laid back vibe and natural ambiance make Starfish Point a popular destination for locals and tourists alike.
“The thing I like most about it is that it is more natural than some of the other areas,” said Mike McNeill.
“The calmness of the ocean, the beautiful ambiance, the weather is always good here,” said Dr. Danuta McDaniel.
“It’s amazing, I love it, the water is beautiful, the nature is just on point, it’s wonderful,” said Carol Ensalaco.
But, a proposal from the Ministry of Tourism to build restroom facilities along with eleven parking places does not sit well with some neighbours.
One objector said neighbors in the area already suffers the consequences of unchecked public use.
“This takes the form of loud music, noise from cars parking and revving their engines, car doors closing… refuse being dumped on our properties or blowing into our properties from the site, trespass by the public on our properties, and theft from our properties by persons gaining access from the site,” read one objection letter included in the agenda for Wednesday’s Central Planning Authority meeting.
Beachgoers like Ms. Ensalaco have their own opinions on the restroom issue.
“I came here because my daughter is about to be proposed to, so we came out here early to make this lovely heart in the sand, and unfortunately I drank a bunch of coffee, so I would really love a restroom because I don’t want to go into the water and be wet for our pictures that are about to happen, so a public restroom would be amazing,” said Ms. Ensalaco.
“Six years ago you could see 30 or 40 or 50 starfish, today we found only one,” said Dr. McDaniel, who disagrees.
She told Cayman 27 she’s seen the area degrade over six years of Cayman vacations.
“I don’t think so,” said Dr. McDaniel. “Most people come here only for one hour, maybe half an hour, and if you commercialize the place, they destroy the ocean, they destroyed the starfish, which are already disappearing.”
“People do come for a small walks and to take a quick picture, so a restroom is actually needed, even if just to wipe the sand off your hands or whatever, so I just feel they are necessary,” said Ms. Ensalaco.
And while Ms. Ensalaco’s daughter said yes to her marriage proposal, the final decision on the restroom issue belongs to the CPA.
While echoing the sentiments of other commenters, one objector stated that the proposed development would be in breach of the Cayman Kai covenants, and the development would also be in breach of development and planning regulations, hinging on section 28’s defining terminology of lands for public purpose.
The application is scheduled to be heard by the CPA Wednesday (9 January) at 10:30 a.m.