Charity Market to be rebuilt at a Cost of $286M

─ New, modern market to replace fire-ravaged structure

A new and modern Charity Market on the Essequibo Coast in Region Two is slated to be rebuilt at a cost of $286 million.

This was disclosed by Minister within the Ministry of Local Government and Regional Development, Anand Persaud, during his visit to the region on Wednesday.

Minister within the Ministry of Local Government and Regional Development, Anand Persaud (centre), Permanent Secretary of the ministry, Miguel Shaun Choo-Kang and Chairperson of Region Two, Vilma De Silva during the meeting with vendors

To secure funding for this project, the ministry sought additional budgetary support from parliament and was granted a supplementary budget.

The contract was awarded to Builders Hardware and General Supplies with construction expected to commence early January 2024 and with a two-month duration.  

The central portion of the Charity Market that was destroyed by fire

The plan and design of the structure have already been drafted.

With the goal of providing relief to vendors affected by the market fire, a new steel-framed structure will be constructed, spanning 152 feet by 164 feet. To minimise the risk of future fires, the facility will be equipped with essential safety measures, including a wet riser system.

The fire that destroyed the section of the market in July

During the construction phase, the government will temporarily relocate vendors to ensure they can continue their livelihoods. The minister appealed for the vendors’ cooperation and assured them that the contractor will expedite the construction process to have the facility ready by early in the new year.

The contractor has already procured some essential materials, such as steel, for the project. Additionally, the vendors were invited to share their concerns and suggestions regarding the construction of the modern market complex.

Also present at the meeting was Permanent Secretary of the ministry, Miguel Shaun Choo-Kang, and the region’s Chairperson, Vilma De Silva.

A devastating fire engulfed the central section of the market on the night of July 6, leaving 40 of the 83 stalls in ruins and vendors grappling with millions of dollars in losses. A thorough investigation by the Guyana Fire Service and the government’s electrical inspectorate determined that the fire originated from an electrical fault.