Officials tour Ritidian to assess safety - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Officials tour Ritidian to assess safety

by Jolene Toves

Guam - At the request of businesses such as Coco Palms, National Wild Life Refuge and property owners, several senators, DPW, and a representative from the Governor's Office made the trek through Route 3a in Ritidian to see what they could do regarding the concerns in the area.  Talks about the road's condition and safety, as well as water access and the opportunities for tourism and how it has been affected by the difficulty presented by the road were brought to light.

Senator Tina Muna Barnes said, "Making sure the stakeholder come together and look at these concerns could be and should be a priority we should be able to see what we can do to address the concerns that are down there and be able to see if we can come up with some kind of mitigation to help."

The National Wildlife Refuge has seen a decrease in visitors to their center as a result of the roads bumps and potholes. Senator Barnes says that by addressing the road's conditions would not only be beneficial with regard to the tourism industry and but to the property owners who make a living off the lands.

Meanwhile DPW director Carl Dominguez says Route 3a is beyond repair and must be completely rebuilt which would cost several million dollars, and that is money they don't have. While the road is eligible for federal funding, Dominguez adds that it would be about 15 years before they would be able to get to the project as the road is not a heavily traversed area with virtually no residential homes.

He added, "I think that any concern that comes from the stakeholders and the business in the community I think that they should be listened to and leadership begins with listening and I think that what might not be a priority to some is a priority for a lot."

Senator Barnes says a collaboration between the government, the federal government, family stakeholders and business community will need to come together to gather the funding to repair the road. And while Route 3a is a priority in regards to the business opportunities that could be garnered from a smooth ride, what about the rest of the island's roads? She speculated, "As oversight chair of the Mayor's Council, I think it's important that as we look for mitigation for all the village streets we been working very closely with the mayors we have some bills that have been introduced we have some resources that we've found for some of the village and we need to continue to move forward."

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