Agriculture, Senator Haynesley Benn

The market which is located in the Old Griffith Pharmacy, behind the north side of Parliament Buildings, will contain 48 stalls, comprising 19 vegetable, 13 variety and 16 clothing booths.

That is the word from Minister of Agriculture, Senator Haynesley Benn, who made a tour of the facility recently.?? He said:?? "even though one or two areas, such as the air conditioning, need to be worked on, we are more or less ready to move in the vendors."

Stating that a zero tolerance policy would be enforced if any vendor, who was allocated a stall on the inside, went outside to ply his or her trade, the Minister declared that "those persons’ stalls would be removed .

"We see this type of activity happening at Cheapside Market too often, and it must stop.?? Vendors have perfectly good stalls within the market, yet they come out on the streets and ply their trade… I do not expect that the Ministry wouldn’t have its challenges, but, I want to emphatically state that we will not accept this type of behaviour."

Projects Director at the Ministry of Agriculture, Wayne Baker, also echoed the Minister’s sentiments.

"There simply wasn’t any space left within the Palmetto Mall, and we need to move the vendors off the street as soon as possible. Hence, the reason for this additional market.?? Also, right now these two streets need to be cleared.?? We need to free up spaces for car parking, but, more importantly, the environs of Parliament, especially to the North, will be beautified, as it is really unattractive.

??"As it stands right now, the stalls located within this new market are far more spacious than what these vendors are currently using.?? Not only will we be providing better accommodation, but proper storage space, as well as a number of other important amenities," Mr. Baker explained.

Reiterating the importance of beautifying the surrounding areas, the Agriculture Minister also expressed a desire to improve the ambience, of the area.

"Persons would be able to walk right off the street and into the market.?? So, vendors should not lose any business," Senator Benn opined.

The new facility will boast a wheel chair access ramp, changing rooms, bathrooms for abled bodied and physically challenged persons, an office area, a kitchenette, a staff bathroom, electrical outlets and round-the clock security.?? Each stall within the market will be rented at $50 a week.??tblackman@barbados.gov.bb

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