Plans are still on schedule to demolish the former Club Med hotel in St. George's before the end of the year.

Asbestos abatement is set to go ahead by the end of the month, followed by a full implosion.

Speaking at a press conference outside the hotel yesterday, developer Carl Bazarian reaffirmed his commitment to the area. He said St. Regis is still the preferred brand and that the design team of golfing legend Nick Faldo has discovered a way to lengthen and further beautify the St. George's Golf Course.

Progressive Labour Party election candidates Dame Jennifer Smith and Dean Foggo were at the press conference.

Revitalization

Dame Jennifer said: "As the first settlement and the site where life in this country began, St. George's is the heart of Bermuda and, as such, will remain at the heart of our tourism revitalization."

About ten squatters living in the derelict building, which has been deemed unfit for human habitation, are being relocated.

Premier Ewart Brown, who was also that press conference, said: "Given the findings of health officials we must move quickly to ensure the people resident at Club Med don't become victims of infectious disease.

"The Ministry of Social Rehabilitation is already working with the small group to provide them with appropriate government assistance."