|BAIC reveals plans behind industrial park|
Guardian Business Editor
Published: Aug 22, 2012
The Soldier Road Industrial Park could be receiving a major face-lift, as plans are underway to modernize the close to 40-acre property, beginning with the construction of a new executive office complex.
Arnold Forbes, executive chairman at the Bahamas Agricultural and Industrial Corporation (BAIC), confirmed to Guardian Business that plans are afoot to transform the corporation into a 21st century business. He believes that the key to this is having the proper facilities.
Forbes revealed that BAIC’s new executive offices would be moved to the industrial park and completed within the next several months.
“We are putting in the proper facilities so that BAIC can function in the vein that it was designed for. We are now in the process of refurbishing the executive offices of BAIC. I believe that in order for BAIC to function properly, we need the proper office space and facilities to ensure that we can compete worldwide,” he said.
“We need to have a facility where manufacturers get the technical assistance and in some cases the financial assistance that they will need to move their companies forward.”
BAIC’s chief noted that the plans for the 10,000-square-foot facility is still very much in its early stages, as it finalizes its budget and the bidding process before construction can begin. He also shared with Guardian Business that the facility will be powered by solar energy, a move that is expected to be a staple throughout the park.
“We are working to finalize a budget for the reconstruction of this building. Our primary financing has been secured for the project. We are not looking to government to fund this project. It will be funded out of BAIC,” according to Forbes.
“We are in the bidding process, so there are still approvals needed before we can move ahead. Once that is completed, we can move full steam ahead with the refurbishment of a building that is presently in the Soldier Road Industrial Park. When it’s completed, you will probably have the first government building that is mainly run off of solar. It should be running with at least 60 percent of solar-powered energy.”
Forbes estimates that the building will be completed with the next eight to 12 months and will house approximately 70 employees.
“Our current premise is just not adequate, so we are moving away from that. We want to get comfortable and ensure that when they come to work, they can do the job that is required of them,” he explained.
According to the executive chairman, BAIC is looking to redevelop the entire park that houses close to 12 businesses in it, as the facility has been idle for more than a decade.
“This park has probably sat idle for the past 10 to 15 years. We want to ensure that this park is a place where you can come to do business. We have plans on the table and people that have been showing interest in using some of the buildings to do manufacturing,” Forbes added.
“We have a company that is very interested in leasing the old Holiday Ice building to manufacture solar water heaters, so we are going to move this park forward. When you see this park in six to eight months time, I am pretty sure that it will be a different picture from what you see today. I believe that there is a lot of potential here and we are here to develop that potential and move it into the prominence that it should have in this country.”
|Last Updated on Wednesday, 22 August 2012 14:33|