Reg. 3 RDC, NDCs consulted on new Vreed-en-Hoop Stelling

― vendors to be relocated and selling standards to be lifted

― Best Klien-Pouderoyen NDC pledges cooperation

― Reg. 3 admin to meet with vendors, minibus and boat operators

DPI, Guyana, Friday, March 22, 2019

The Government of Guyana through the Ministry of Public Infrastructure is embarking on a project that will see the rehabilitation of the Vreed-en-Hoop and Stabroek Stellings. Funded under a grant scheme by the United Kingdom Caribbean Infrastructure Partnership Fund (UKCIF), a contract was awarded to Mott MacDonald to conduct the feasibility study. Mott MacDonald, a consultancy group from the United Kingdom, on March 20, met with stakeholders in Region 3.

The first consultation was held with the Essequibo Islands-West Demerara administration. Consultant Jonathan McCue gave an overview of the project and solicited the cooperation of the administration.

“This is a project that I am certain will benefit this region tremendously and our intention is to ensure that not only is it feasible but also in keeping with the green state strategy of the Government. The project must give an aesthetic outlook to your area and at the same time be environmentally and economically friendly to your region and by extension the country,” McCue noted.

Expanding further on the project was Coastal Engineer Lucy Eyres, who presented a draft design to the administration. Eyres noted that the design will cater for the relocation of the vendors who currently occupy the area. Space for parking of vehicles and consideration for persons living with disabilities are also in the draft design. The new stellings are expected to be powered by solar power.

Coming out of the discussion, the consultants will try to facilitate a recreational space within the design, but that will be based on the space and other resources available. The design will also cater to the rise in water level which sometimes leads to flooding at the stellings.

According to the consultants, an environmental assessment and other related studies are also being conducted.

According to Assistant Regional Executive Officer (AREO), Shameer Shahid, the project will receive cooperation from all the stakeholders.

“We wish to commit our fullest support to this project. We as an administration will facilitate meetings and engagements with the minibus operators, vendors and speed boat operators so that they can also be on board with this project. Yes, when the actual project commences it will bring some discomfort, but the result will worth the discomfort because we will be far way more comfortable when the project is completed than what we are now.”

After meeting with the Regional Administration, the Mott MacDonald team met with the Best Klien-Pouderoyen Neighbourhood Democratic Council (NDC) which is the local authority area in which the Vreed-en-Hoop Stelling falls. The NDC pledged its support and welcomed the initiative.

The team also met with other NDCs within the region namely Stewartville-Cornelia Ida, Hague-Blankenburg, La Jalousie-Novelle Flanders.

The consultants will continue their discussions with other stakeholders after which a final document will be submitted to the Ministry of Public Infrastructure.

Story and Images: Ganesh Mahipaul.