Baie-Mahault

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Baie-Mahault
Location of the commune (in red) within Guadeloupe
Location of the commune (in red) within Guadeloupe
Coordinates: 16°16′N 61°35′W / 16.27°N 61.58°W / 16.27; -61.58Coordinates: 16°16′N 61°35′W / 16.27°N 61.58°W / 16.27; -61.58
Country France
Overseas region and department Guadeloupe
Arrondissement Basse-Terre
Canton Baie-Mahault
Government
 • Mayor (2001–2007) Ary Chalus
Area1 46.0 km2 (17.8 sq mi)
Population (2007)2 28,893
 • Density 630/km2 (1,600/sq mi)
INSEE/Postal code 97103 / 97122
Elevation 0–112 m (0–367 ft)

1 French Land Register data, which excludes lakes, ponds, glaciers > 1 km² (0.386 sq mi or 247 acres) and river estuaries.

2 Population without double counting: residents of multiple communes (e.g., students and military personnel) only counted once.

Baie-Mahault is the second most populated commune in the French overseas region and department of Guadeloupe after Abymes The extensive Zoning Industriel of Jarry, in Baie-Mahault is far the most industrialized communes in the islands and the largest industrial park in the Lesser Antilles.[1] It is part of the urban area of Pointe-à-Pitre, the largest conurbation in Guadeloupe, located 7 km (4 NM) in the northwest.

In the 2008 census, Baie-Mahault had a population of 29,980. The commune has a land area of 46 square kilometres (18 sq mi). The population density is 628 persons per km². The inhabitants of Baie-Mahault are called Baie-Mahaultiens.

Ary Chalus is the current incumbent Mayor of Baie-Mahault as of 2010.[2][3]

History[edit]

Baie-Mahault may be named for a variety of mangrove called mahault or mahot common in this area.

On 29 November 1808, during the Napoleonic Wars, boats from HMS Heureux attacked French vessels in the harbour and the batteries protecting them. The captain of Heureux was killed and one of his men was wounded. The British succeeded in destroying the guns of one of the two batteries, and in capturing a schooner.[4]

In 1843 there was a severe earthquake. In October 1865, a cholera epidemic flared up. In Guadeloupe, from October 1865 to June 1866, 12,000 inhabitants perished. Mahault Bay was the first and worst hit by the epidemic.

In 1910, the Darboussier Factory was constructed. In 1918, the TSF radio station was built. An electric generating plant was built in 1934 which supplied Guadeloupe. The 1928 Okeechobee hurricane destroyed much of the town. The church and the presbytery were rebuilt in 1933. The Gabarre bridge and the industrial and commercial park of Jarry, the largest in Guadeloupe, were built. In 2001, Ary Chalus became mayor.

Geography[edit]

Baie-Mahault (Mangrove Bay) is located in the borough called Canton and it extends a vast plain of northeastern Basse-Terre Island, where it meets Grande-Terre. A channel, navigable by smaller boats, of from 30–100 yards across, called Riviere Salee or Salt River separates the two islands. The Baie-Mahault area sets in marshlands and marine cul-de-sacs. The town prospered through fertile arable lands used to grow sugar cane. The mangrove swamps are a few miles east at the Salt River. Baie-Mahault is 7 km (4.3 mi) northwest of the city of Pointe-à-Pitre and 8 km (5.0 mi) west of Pointe-à-Pitre International Airport.

Climate[edit]

Baie-Mahault experiences a good amount of rainfall during the year, with a wetter season between July and November which coincides with hurricane season. The town receives 1500 2000 mm of rainfall. Tropical heat brings constant highs of around 32 °C (89 °F) that drop to 20 °C (68 °F) at night. Trade winds, called alizés, blow from the northeast and often temper the climate. The hurricane season occurs from June to November.

Climate data for Baie-Mahault
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 27
(81)
27
(81)
28
(82)
28
(82)
29
(84)
31
(88)
31
(88)
31
(88)
32
(90)
31
(88)
29
(84)
28
(82)
29
(84)
Average low °C (°F) 22
(72)
22
(72)
23
(73)
24
(75)
24
(75)
25
(77)
25
(77)
26
(79)
26
(79)
25
(77)
24
(75)
23
(73)
23
(73)
Rainfall mm (inches) 122
(4.8)
112
(4.41)
112
(4.41)
89
(3.5)
97
(3.82)
112
(4.41)
155
(6.1)
183
(7.2)
196
(7.72)
196
(7.72)
180
(7.09)
140
(5.51)
1,692
(66.61)
Mean monthly sunshine hours 8 8 8 9 9 8 9 9 8 9 8 8 8
Source: [1] , BBC Weather

Economy[edit]

The town is surrounded by one major crop: sugarcane. A sugar factory is southwest of Baie-Mahault. Cane cutters cut cane and sometimes transport it by ox-cart. Southwards, are some banana and pineapple plantations. As the town sits on two bays, there is no surprise that there is a fishing port. Basse-Terre grows more crops than Grande-Terre, but has fewer people and most of them are in the primary sector.

The 300 hectares (740 acres) artisanal, commercial, and industrial park of Jarry, with more than 3,500 companies is among the very largest industrial parks of France. It accommodates the Port authority of Guadeloupe, the Complex World Trade Center (logistical center of the CCI of Pointe-à-Pitre), the oil terminals of the SARA (Société Anonyme de la Raffinerie des Antilles), and two power plants.[5] The industrial and commercial park of Jarry-Moudong is regarded as the economic lung of the Guadeloupe with employment of more than 10,000. Jarry is ideally located between Pointe-à-Pitre International Airport and the port, and also accommodates a free zone the EEC intended for the operations of international trade for its warehouses.

Sights[edit]

There are two hotels, Hotel-o-Matic, in Jarry and Villa Baie Mahault, in walking distance to Baie-Mahault.

At the end of the borough, below the town hall, a landing stage located at the edge of the lagoon, is the starting point of tours of the bay.

The shopping center of Carrefour, in Destrellan is located in Baie-Mahault, where you can buy French imports such as cologne, perfumes, clothing, food, etc. It is the busiest and largest hypermarket zone anywhere in the Lesser Antilles, where there are in an average day between 5.000 and 10.000 visitors.

The main sport arena is a single velodrome, in Gourde-Liane nearby Destrellan and a stadium called Fiesque Duchesne (some events are such as notables concerts including Ray Charles, George Benson, Diam's, Al Jarreau and Lionel Richie

The industrial park of Jarry has an oil terminal, two electrical and thermal power stations for the many industrial and commercial businesses and a logistic center for the CCI.

A sandy beach near Mahault Bay is protected by coral reefs.

On Pointe Double, you can see a lighthouse and a weather station.

A leprosarium, or leper's house, was operated by the Soeurs de la Charite and closed in 1954.

Sectors[edit]

The settlements are depending of the commune are:

  • Agathon
  • Beausoleil
  • Belcourt
  • Bragelogne
  • La Jaille
  • Calvaire
  • Convenance
  • Moudong
  • Jarry
  • La Retraite
  • Gourde-Liane
  • Fonds Richer
  • Wonche
  • Destrellan
  • Trioncelle
  • La Retraite

Notables resident[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ INSEE
  2. ^ Mapolin, Harry (February 16, 2010). "Interview de Ary Chalus maire de Baie-Mahault: " Je n'ai pas de carrière politique à faire "" (in French). France-Antilles. Archived from the original on 2 April 2010. Retrieved February 19, 2010. 
  3. ^ "Guadeloupe protesters shoot three police officers". AFP (Sydney Morning Herald). 2009-02-18. Archived from the original on 4 March 2009. Retrieved 2009-02-19. 
  4. ^ Long, William H. (1895) Medals of the British navy and how they were won: with a list of those officers, who for their gallant conduct were granted honorary swords and plate by the Committee of the Patriotic Fund. (London: Norie & Wilson).
  5. ^ "Z.A.C. de Jarry" (in French). Archived from the original on 18 March 2010. Retrieved February 19, 2010. 

External links[edit]