November 15, 2005
The Chaguanas Borough Day celebrations took place on the 7th October to celebrate the fifteenth year of Chaguanas becoming a borough. This year an annual military parade took place to commemorate the occasion. The street fest that usually follows the military parade was notably absent this year because of concerns of the increasing crime situation in the country.
Chaguanas is the largest of three boroughs existing in Trinidad and Tobago which includes the Borough of Arima and the Borough of Point Fortin. Chaguanas was elevated to the status of a borough in October 1990 and now consists of 8 municipal districts which, prior to 1990, consisted of 11 municipal districts. This was completed under the National Alliance for Reconstruction (NAR) regime in their bid to decentralize local government. The Electoral Districts of Chaguanas are: Enterprise North, Felicity/ Endeavour, Enterprise South, Munroe Road/ Caroni Savannah Road, Edinburgh/Longdenville, Cunupia, Montrose and Charlieville. The Chaguanas Borough Corporation, which is an offshoot of the former Caroni County Council, was then established in October 1991 under the provisions of the Municipal Corporations Act No. 21 of 1990.
Chaguanas, which is located in the County of Caroni on the Western coast of Trinidad, lies 35 km from the main city of Port-of-Spain in north Trinidad and 57 km from the city of San Fernando in south Trinidad. This was originally the area where a group of Amerindians resided who referred to themselves as 'Chaguanes'. The Spanish settlers who entered the island of Trinidad in 1498 named the area after this clan of Amerindians. Currently, the resident population of Chaguanas is said to be around 100,000 and approximately 80,000 people enter the borough on a daily basis.
On this occasion, Chaguanas Borough Day, other achievements were celebrated such as the construction of box drains, road paving and street lighting. This development is a far cry from Chaguanas' earlier history as a domain primarily used for sugarcane production. Chaguanas' early history as a sugarcane and to a lesser extent cocoa plantation economic system began with the settlement of the British in 1797 until very recently in the 1960's, when housing developments began to alter the mainly agricultural landscape. In addition, from the 1860's, Chaguanas became a main centre of transport activity by providing a travel route linking north and south Trinidad via the Caroni Savannah Road. In fact, because of Chaguanas' growing importance as a main area of communication and economic activity, the Trinidad Government Railway, which was established in 1876, was linked to Chaguanas as early as 1880. Today, Chaguanas is linked by other major roads such as the Uriah Butler Highway and the Churchill-Roosevelt Highway.
Chaguanas main road
Activities that are at the top of the agenda of the Chaguanas Borough Council and that are currently being implemented include campaigns for healthy lifestyles, the promotion of cultural celebrations, sports, and measures to sanitize and preserve the environment.
The present Mayor of Chaguanas, Dr. Suruj Rambachan heads project development in this fast-growing commercial centre and is assisted by the Deputy Mayor, Mr. Orlando Nagessar, Councillors and Aldermen. They endeavour to utilize the tools of technology and the resources within their reach to ensure that the borough of Chaguanas continues along its developmental path.
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