FREDERIKSTED — The Virgin Islands Department of Sports, Parks and Recreation held a groundbreaking ceremony for the Vincent F. Mason Sr. Coral Resort Tuesday morning on St. Croix, kicking off the first of many large recovery projects planned for fiscal year 2022.
Construction will commence this week on the $2.2 million FEMA funded project to restore the recreational facility after ocean storm surge and severe winds from Hurricanes Irma and Maria destroyed the park’s pool, fencing, and security lighting.
“Today’s groundbreaking is the culmination of months of hard work and the beginning of the transformation of Frederiksted,” Governor Bryan said. “A transformation, not to return the glory days of yesteryear, but to usher in the boundless promise of tomorrow while keeping the culture and the spirit of what makes Frederiksted unique.”
“The Bryan-Roach Administration has invested in that promise and is committed to rebuilding Frederiksted with more than $247 million in total projects, and I look forward to working with the Legislature to bring these projects to fruition for our people.”
Residents from Christiansted and Frederiksted flocked to the park on the far western end of the island, where children learned to swim and adults played dominoes and cards, sharing family-friendly food and fun. The bathrooms, tiki shelters, grilling stations, picnic tables and electrical systems will all be restored, returning the beloved facility to its original grandeur by summer 2022.
“You are going to be pleased when this facility is completed and reopened to the people of the Virgin Islands, said Department of Sports, Parks and Recreation Commissioner Calvert White. “A lot of the work that went into where we are today, having a contractor on site, started years ago and is the product of teamwork amongst various agencies. I would like to acknowledge the Virgin Islands Department of Property and Procurement, Planning and Natural Resources, Public Works, Office of Disaster Recovery, and my staff at the Department of Sports, Parks and Recreation for their dedication.”
The five-acre recreation center near Sandy Point in Frederiksted was named in honor of long-time DSPR employee and ardent community sports fan and supporter Mr. Vincent Mason, Sr., in 1980. It quickly became one of the island’s primary recreational facilities hosting a wide array of activities on a regular basis prior to the 2017 storms.
“Today, we celebrate partnership, patience and progress,” said Adrienne L. Williams-Octalien, Director of the Office of Disaster Recovery. “I would like to thank FEMA for the obligation and the support to bring this project to fruition, the family of Vincent Mason Sr. for their dedication to the people of Frederiksted and the community for their continued patience as we work to rebuild these Virgin Islands for the people. Let’s continue to celebrate the wins along the way.”
Governor Albert Bryan Jr and other officials, including Lieutenant Governor Tregenza A. Roach, Esq., Senate Vice President Novelle Francis, Senator Carrion, Senator Gittens, Senator Johnson, Senator Vialet, Office of Disaster Recovery Director Adrienne L. Williams-Octalien, Department of Public Works Assistant Commissioner Dennis Brow, Laverne Joseph, and Commissioner White as well Mr. Augustin Mason accompanied by representatives from the family of Mr. Vincent Mason Sr. and residents of Frederiksted, were all on hand to usher in the start of the project.