Albany expects to begin its Albany West development on the former South Ocean resort property in the first quarter of 2021, pending approvals by the government, it was revealed in a Town Planning Committee meeting held last night, with the developer’s team explaining that the first phase will be about $300 million in construction costs.
The phase one development, which will include eight beachfront properties and two condo/hotel buildings with 24 units per building, is also expected to provide 500 jobs. Albany said 2,000 jobs are expected to be created throughout future phases.
Albany also revealed during the town hall meeting that the project will no longer include the rerouting of the Southwest Road just outside of the property, or the construction of a tunnel for golf cart access.
According to information revealed in the meeting, the development of the golf course will not be part of the phase one development.
Vice President of Strategic Development for Albany Harry Winner said during the town hall meeting that the development of phase one is expected to take three to four years, and that only nine of the more than 300 acres secured by Albany will be developed.
South Ocean residents expressed concerns that their beach access will be cut off by Albany’s development, though Albany’s representatives at the meeting contend that existing beach access on property not owned by Albany will remain.
South Ocean residents’ other concerns in addition to beach access and the road diversion included the disruption of a Bahamas Power and Light (BPL) fuel line during construction, noise pollution, security in the area during construction, the aesthetics of the area, traffic and drainage, the connection of the sewer system to the property to be developed, concerns related to electricity poles and street lights and a proposed golf cart tunnel under the road.
Albany contended that concerns regarding BPL’s fuel line, the area’s sewer line, electricity poles and street lights and the golf cart paths are now moot because certain aspects of the development have been taken out of their plan.
In terms of the sewerage system, Winner said Albany West’s sewer system will not connect to the residents’ sewer line but to Albany resort’s system.
According to the Albany representatives, the Stuart Cove’s diving operation sits on property that will be developed as part of the Albany West project; that operation will be moving to Coral Harbour.
Area residents said they are offended that developers have not consulted them more outside of last night’s town hall meeting.
Albany said phase one will be a low density beach front development that will not be intrusive to the surrounding community.