Solution Sought to Jacobs Ladder Dilemma

Whenever government officials talk about roads on St. John, Jacob’s Ladder, the steep hill on South Shore Road between Enighed and The Westin Resort, always comes up. The severe grade may be breathtaking for tourists, but residents know how treacherous it can be.

Jacob’s Ladder wasn’t on the agenda at the May 17 meeting of the V.I. Senate Committee on Government Operations and Consumer Affairs on St. John, but when the subject came up there was an immediate discussion of whether to cut down the top of the hill or raise up the approaches.

St. Johnian Melville Samuel asked Department of Public Works officials if something could be done to create “a less steep incline for Jacob’s Ladder — and committee chairman Sen. Roosevelt David agreed.

“Is something going to be done,” David asked DPW officials, as he recalled one fatal accident on the steep hill — and one accident of his own.

One St. Johnian reminded the committee there is a public right of way which runs along the upper portion of The Valley section of Enighed from Centerline Road above Cruz Bay to the top of Jacob’s Ladder.

“There is a road from Route 10, Centerline Road across from the Seventh Day Adventist Church, past the new Sirenusa condominium development to the top of Jacob’s Ladder,” according to taxi operator and retired National Park Service Ranger Edmund Roberts.

“We will look into this,” said DPW Commissioner George Phillips.