90 Zeeburg vendors to relocate for WCD Road Project
The West Coast Demerara Road Improvement Project will move into Zeeburg, West Coast Demerara (WCD) unencumbered following agreement by Zeeburg vendors to relocate to facilitate the project.
Minister within the Ministry of Public Infrastructure, Annette Ferguson, met with the Zeeburg vendors yesterday (June 14, 2016) at the Zeeburg Secondary School to discuss the relocation of approximately 90 vendors from the Zeeburg Market. Minister Ferguson was accompanied by a team from the Ministries of Public Infrastructure and Finance, the Regional Democratic Council (RDC) of Region 3 and the Neighbourhood Democratic Council (NDC).
During yesterday’s meeting, it was emphasised that the project was one which would lend to the country’s development as well as facilitate safety on the roadways. The vendors were also informed that their refusal to relocate would impede the project significantly and lead to financial burden to the Government and people of Guyana. According to the agreement with the loaning agency, the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB), the technical specifications must be adhered to and are therefore unchangeable. Currently, the Zeeburg vendors are operating in the direct path of the proposed road works.
A failure to move forward with the project as stipulated in its contract could lead to heavy financial repercussions for Guyana from the CDB.
According to Minister Ferguson, “Vendors’ unwillingness can negatively affect the project but working together with us will facilitate growth and economic expansion for all Guyana.”
After listening to the concerns of the vendors, a tarmac in De Willem, WCD was proposed as a vending site. This site was created years ago for vending but, due to security concerns, vendors had refused to occupy it. These concerns were raised once again yesterday and taken into consideration by the present officials.
It was therefore decided that the site would be made more satisfactory for the vendors through improved security and facilities. According to Project Coordinator, Kester Hinds, lighting fixtures will be installed while the tarmac will be graded. Security will also be provided for the vendors, who operate only on Saturdays. These works will commence tomorrow (June 16) and the vendors have agreed to relocate to side streets until the tarmac is ready.
The vendors have also agreed to official finish their operations along the Zeeburg Public Road this Saturday, June 18.
The meeting concluded with all stakeholders wholly satisfied with the outcome. The discussion comes less than a week after Minister Ferguson met with vendors from Vreed-en-Hoop to discuss their relocation as part of the project. The majority of the 65 Vreed-en-Hoop vendors have already relocated to the agreed sites.
The WCD Road Improvement Project, which began in Hydronie and stretches to Vreed-en-Hoop, covers approximately 30.7 kilometres of road and is primarily financed by the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB). Works will include pavement rehabilitation; installation of traffic signs and road markings; provision of additional streetlights; construction of concrete drains; and the relocation of utilities.