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Press Release

JCC & Kingston Creative Launch Transformation Initiative

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The Jamaica Chamber of Commerce (JCC) and Kingston Creative have partnered with a coalition of paint manufacturers and distributors on a medium-term initiative to support and upgrade the “look and feel” of the downtown Kingston Business District. The initiative, themed “Transform the City for Jamaica 60”, builds on the work of the JCC and Kingston Creative to re-vitalize Kingston’s reputation as one of the world’s premier City Centres.

The coalition comprises Berger Paints, Brandram Henderson (BH), HL Rapid True Value and Sherwin Williams which are offering deep discounts on paint and related supplies to businesses located in the downtown business district. The initiative will be kicked off on Tuesday July 5th when teams comprising representatives of the Jamaica Chamber of Commerce, Kingston Creative and the participating manufacturers will make visits to firms located on King, Duke, East, Church, Orange and Harbour Streets.

The partners are emphasizing that while the initial focus is being placed on the listed streets, there is scope for the initiative to expand beyond those boundaries and to include other partners. Elaborating on the scope for further partnerships, JCC Vice President Michael McMorris, the chair of the association’s Downtown Kingston Redevelopment Working Group, noted that “This is an important part of our wider urban redevelopment imperative – to develop a coalition of the willing and not so willing for an effective long-term solution to the state of our Urban Centres. It is important to project a vision of what is possible in order to get both the state agencies and the private sector to come to the table”. Those conversations, he revealed, have already begun. He noted too that the JCC is practicing what it preaches, pointing out that its own property on East Parade was treated to a facelift earlier in the year.

Kingston Creative’s Executive Director Andrea Dempster Chung advised that the organization has always seen its downtown Kingston efforts as a medium to long-term undertaking with enormous potential. She stated: “As Downtown Kingston develops into a Cultural District, there are economic benefits for local communities, businesses, restaurants, hotels and also an increase in real-estate values. The Private Sector has always been a powerful driver of change in urban renewal, and we welcome this new partnership with the Jamaica Chamber of Commerce, which we hope will accelerate the rehabilitation of the architectural facades that hold so much history, beauty and value for the district.”