60% of municipal income in Cabo Rojo comes from tourism, so the mayor, Jorge A. Morales Wiscovitchsaid to focus on new strategies and alliances to continue the growth of this sector and not depend on loans to maintain the town’s economy and give way to the development of projects.
Morales stressed that seeks to turn his town into a destination for the arrival of small luxury cruise shipssuch as the Sea Dream II of the company Sea Dream Yacht Club, with capacity for 110 passengers, which docked in Cabo Rojo in February.
“The years of living on loans have passed into history and Cabo Rojo, having the blessings of nature, we understand that we can bet on tourism as one of the main sources of income and that Cabo Rojo can support itself, without having to be depending on this type of culture of borrowing and we are working for that”he expressed.
“Recently, a small cruise ship came to Cabo Rojo, one of those called ‘luxury’ and from the visits they made to Puerto Rico, talking with the captain and looking at emails, one of the most important destinations for this cruise was Boquerón and so it was that now Boquerón is going to be a fixed part of his visits to Puerto Rico”said the mayor.
According to Morales, this experience opens the doors for more boats of this type to anchor off the coast of Cabo Verde and to capitalize on this market.
“We are working with that. Logically, facilities need to be improved, docks. At least for this cruise, the Coast Guard asked us for a few details and they are working on that. But, thank God, that brings us a little more economy and, at the same time, whoever comes to Boquerón is going to speak well and they are going to come back or more people are going to arrive by other air and land routes”, predicted the mayor.
Likewise, Morales announced that efforts are being made to promote Cabo Rojo under the concept of ‘sister city’ (sister cities) together with Key West in Florida. With this effort, both destinations will promote each other.
“There was an approach of people from Key West in the United States to make a concept that other countries have of making sister cities. They already made their resolution there in the government, we made it here. The concept is that Key West will promote Boquerón, Cabo Rojo, Combate and we will promote Key West as a sister city and activities will be carried out between both towns”said the mayor.
They will renovate emblematic spaces
Among the tourism development plans are improvements to several iconic places in Cabo Rojo, in addition to working on their embellishment and decoration.
“We have given emphasis to making our town beautiful, since Cabo Rojo is a tourist city that receives so many thousands of visitors and that was one of our great challenges. The municipal buildings were in a fairly critical state of abandonment and the decoration of the town lacked shine”Morales said.
Another important project for the mayor is the second remodeling of the town of Boquerón, which is in the design process and will cost approximately $1 million.
“The town had been fixed and that design that was worked on was not functional, since they were ornamental boards on top of blocks and they have broken, the screws are coming out, they are raised and it has resulted in a danger. The carts that were bought for the merchants have also become a hazard because they are full of mold everywhere. So a project to remodel the town of Boquerón is coming. All these works are with City Revitalization funds, ARPA and CRIM money”, said the mayor.
The municipal president also said that he is seeking permits to start the remodeling of the Los Morrillos Lighthouse.
“The Los Morrillos Lighthouse is going to be restored. It had not been possible to do it before because the permit we had to use it had expired for several years and we had to enter the competition process again to manage it. Thank God they favored us and we have already received the official permit and, soon, some permits will be made to remodel the lighthouse and use will begin again, “explained the mayor.
Work will include replacement of doors and windows, repairs to cracks and deck boards on the second floor, and painting of its exteriors.
In the same way, the Caborrojeño mayor plans to make improvements to the Ramón Emeterio Betances recreation square, and to the streets of the urban area. Both projects, he indicated, are already in the design process and the investment is close to $2 million.
On the other hand, The mayor said that he is working on a flood mitigation project in the Pole Ojea community and the Corozo neighborhood. There a pluvial canal is being built at an approximate cost of $3 million.
“A rain channel is being built to divert water and prevent flooding in the Pole Ojea community and the Corozo neighborhood. That community is like a hole and, although it doesn’t rain much there, but when there were these 100-year rains, on that occasion water accumulated and had to be extracted and there were residences with eight feet of water, reaching their windows. This construction is to prevent these waters from reaching there and that this does not happen again, “Morales said.