Published On: Wed, Dec 19th, 2018

Building blocks for the up rise of a new creative class in Curacao

Urban Crisis1The local government promotes possibilities for creation of smart nation Curacao and it becoming as an attractive destination for digital nomads. This group travels the world around seeking for nice destinations.  Most digital nomads have some kind of place that they call home, which is usually where their family or childhood friends are located, but they wouldn't spend more than a few months a year there. Curacao can become now part of their wish list. An impulse in cities cause by ‘The New Urban Crisis’ (Richard Florida) leads to that tourists and dwellers coming from cities seeks for comfort in the outskirts sometimes in fare away areas of big cities.

More and more Curacao is becoming a more prefer destination in the Caribbean for the tourist, but it is not discovered yet by a big portion of city-dwellers. These try to avoid the structural problems of cities, like traffic congestion, increasing inequality, class wars, deepening of segregation, failing middle class and turmoil. With the inaugural flight and joint services of Divi Divi Air and Coredon Dutch Airlines to St. Maarten via Curacao Sâo Paulo, Brazil becomes the 19th city with a nonstop flight to Curacao. This strengthen the efforts of Curacao becoming a hub between Las Americas and Europe. Curacao will become the second logistics hub of InterCaribbean Airways, which is the aviation company from the Turkish and Caicos islands. It will have access to flights to the southern Caribbean islands and the north of South America. Conversely, it is now easier for the southern islands to gain access to the Windward Islands.

The other 18 cities with a nonstop flight to Curacao, are: Montreal, Canada with a flight of Air Canada; Santiago de Cuba with Fly Always; Frankfurt, Germany with Condor; Charlotte, USA with American Airlines; New York City with JetBlue; Santo Domingo capital of Dominican Republic with Sunrise Airways, FlexFlight, Fly Always and Air Century; Port of Spain, Trinidad & Tobago with Surinam Airways; Toronto, Canada with Air Canada, Sunwing and WestJet;  Caracas, Venezuela with Avior and LASER; Panama City with COPA; Paramaribo, Surinam with Fly Always, FlexFlight and Insel Air; Bogotá, Colombia with Avianca; St. Maarten with Winair and Insel Air; Amsterdam, Netherlands with KLM, TUI fly Netherlands; Miami, USA with American Airlines; Kralendijk, Bonaire with Insel Air, Aruba Airlines and Winair and last but not least Oranjestad, Aruba to fly with Aruba Airlines and Winair. Through these the passenger can make connections also to another cities, islands and world places.

Urban CrisisWhat is the difference between now and past endeavors? Beside its small economy but combine with nowadays possibilities of connection-flights coming from big cities to Curacao, Curacao has become an integral part of the urban fabric of big cities. But how can the potential of these relationships be intensifying and better put into use as benefit for the economic development of the island?

Change begins always with people. Endues by technological developments based upon the knowledge economy, Curacao can become a virtual hot spot in the Caribbean enforce by inducing innovations of the digital revolution. And also influence by incoming city-dwellers moving into the island as their new living and working place outside their big polluted cities, where they come from, they can create a new working class: ‘The Rise of the Creative Class’ (Richard Florida). At the same time these city-dwellers will enjoy the benefits of a tranquil environment, but with acceptable living standards. To mention a few amenities: the availability of continuous sunshine all year long, white sand beaches, relative warm seawaters for swimming, good food and living a healthy life.

The challenge remains, how this creative class will blend in with already existing classes in Curacao, like the working and the service class of people? The creative class is made up of workers in occupations spanning computer science and mathematics; architecture and engineering; the life, physical, and social sciences; the art, design, music, entertainment, sports, and media; management, business; and finance; and law, health care, education, and training. The signs of a shift towards the creation of a new development are currently in children’s shoes. This can be made possible by intensifying the cultural and working ties between Curacao with city-dwellers. But the infrastructure and procurement of the existing old economy, firstly, they should be drastically adjusted to the requirements and standards of the new economy to make effective trade and interconnections possible.

By Sharnon Isenia, Willemstad Curacao

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