Firms join city clean-up By Shawnel Cudjoe
Guyana Chronicle
January 14, 2007

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THE DOWNTOWN Enhancement Initiative Committee has embarked on several projects, including placing garbage bins at strategic locations, to ensure Georgetown looks its best for Cricket World Cup.

The committee, which is made of up Georgetown business owners, Friday held a press conference at the John Fernandes Terminal, Water Street, to update the media on what it has been doing so far.

The committee was initiated last September by Managing Director of John Fernandes, Mr. Chris Fernandes, after the Mayor and City Council appealed to businesses to aid in the plans to clean up the city.

Fernandes said plans are in place to begin placing the bins around the city from tomorrow. He said the 200 bins will be acquired at a cost of $10M and the Guyana Telephone and Telegraph Company (GT&T) has indicated its willingness to fund 20 of these.

According to Fernandes, although there are bins around the city, because of the structure, it is quite easy for persons of unsound mind to rummage through them and dump the contents outside. He said the new model bins will be cemented to the ground and will be constrained by a chain and that will make the removal of the contents very difficult.

Fernandes said the group will be working with the Solid Waste Management Department of the Georgetown Mayor and City Council (M&CC) in determining where the bins are placed and having them emptied regularly.

We are assured that arrangements are being put in place to clear these bins on a daily basis,” he said. He added that if this is not done, it would defeat the purpose of having them installed.

Plans also include doing temporary repairs to the vendors’ mall to try and make it more pleasing to the eyes of visitors so that they can have a better impression of the city, Fernandes said.

He pointed out that this is only a short term initiative and Central Government will have to decide at a later time what actions to take.

The area behind the National Museum is expected to be transformed into an entertainment site and Fernandes said they are working with the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sport to host cultural activities there during the off days of cricket.

He urged that the City Council look at the problems of traffic lights and mini-bus parking because everything must be done to ensure visitors’ safety and security.

Committee member, Mr. Vic Insanally said they are seeking the financial support of a number of city businesses and assured that all monies will be accounted for. He said an account has been opened at Republic Bank for persons who wish to make a contribution.

He said extensive landscaping works are ongoing to enhance several areas and medians in the city are also being improved as part of the initiative.

Republic Bank and the New Building Society (NBS) will be installing lighting and repairing four bridges along Avenue of the Republic at a cost of $2.7M. Insanally said the works will be done by KK Construction Company and efforts will be made to keep the historic metal work of the bridges.

Works will also be done to areas bordered by Church Street, Avenue of the Republic, Hadfield Street and the Demerara River.

Mayor of Georgetown, Mr. Hamilton Green, said the committee should be commended for the initiative and urged others to join because it is not possible for the state and the city to undertake all the works.

He urged citizens to desist from dumping garbage in canals and alleyways and let the city remain clean.