Find out exactly where Christopher Columbus landed to create the first European settlement in the “New World” and you come up with the coordinates, 19°41′26″N 72°00′57″W, a settlement he called La Navidad. Today, if you plugin these coordinates it takes you to Caracol Bay, where the Northern Industrial Park is located. It makes me wonder if the Haitian government lost a big worldly-historic tourism opportunity when it sold (or leased) this land to the United States and others.
I will admit that I do not know how much of the entire bay area has been sold already. But I do know that this bit of land , it’s passage into the bay makes up the Industrial Park. Right now the surrounding land is being sold to construct a series of housing projects and shopping centers – by international banks – for workers of the industrial park community.
So if the land is not all sold yet, let this column I’m writing serve as a warning for the Haitian government: This is a valuable piece of real estate.
The Caracol Bay area is where Columbus first landed and where the first European settlement in this hemisphere was built. There is a significant opportunity to use this property for tourism because it has sentimental value to a lot of people, white people.
Some suggestions I can give the Haitian government and tourism minister would be to spend some money to put a statue of Columbus in the water, in the bay.
Set up an area where people can take symbolic baths in the water of the mangroves, promoting the notion that Columbus traveled for gold and to find the fountain of youth.
Some education tours and maybe a treasure hunt. Reenactments of battles between the Spaniards and the Taino native tribes of that day. I don’t know, the ideas are endless and better than doing nothing, and a heck of a lot better than selling the land.
The point I’m trying to make is that this was the first landing spot of Christopher Columbus. It was in Haiti. We should probably be trying to take advantage of this historical fact rather than selling the land to other countries. Just my opinion.
We post, you decide.Note: I used the word “sold” loosely. It’s a little gray when you’re talking about leased or sold as it pertains to land. Haiti is sovereign territory so the land can’t really be “sold” sold to foreigners, but I don’t think foreigners build industrial parks, housing communities and shopping centers to be there just for 30 years… so you might as well call it sold (for the time being).
Like Labadee, owned by Royal Caribbean, They may or may not decide to stick around for eternity, paying the land tax, but there’s a lot of wear and tear going to be done IF they leave anyways. You decide how you wish to interpret it.