CHRISTIANSTED, U.S. Virgin Islands --- What could be better to rekindle the flagging tourism base on St. Croix here than a $100 million theme park?

Stateside development consultants recently presented plans to the V.I. Port Authority for the 50-attraction Ay Ay Adventure Park, named after the Carib Indian name for St. Croix.

Attractions would include a shopping and entertainment village; a water park with a wave pool, beach and dolphin swims; aquariums; a hurricane simulator; and a Crucian heritage museum. Four possible sites were identified for the attraction -- three in the Frederiksted area on the West end of St. Croix and the fourth near Christiansted.

Experts said the park would create up to 1,600 jobs and could be an impetus for bringing cruise lines back to the island by giving passengers something new to see and do.

At the Port Authority board meeting, government officials reacted favorably to the presentation.

Tourism commissioner Pamela Richards, who serves as the Port Authority chairperson, said the government should act "swiftly" to get the project moving, especially to secure the land where the park will be built and create tax incentives to entice developers.

To contact reporter Gay Nagle Myers, send e-mail to [email protected].

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