Trinidad and Tobago: The Ministry of Housing & Development will allocate some $45M TT to renovate and refurbish the East Side Plaza in Port-of-Spain as part of the Government’s capital city revitalization plan.
This according to Housing Minister Pennelope Beckles, who was speaking at a Ministry of Works and Transport press conference in Port-of-Spain yesterday, Beckles dispelled rumors that Government was planning to sell the Plaza to the Chinese Government.
She said the building is about 100 years old and has been utilized since 1991 as the business incubator for entrepreneurs to grow their respective businesses.
“It was conceptualized to cater for street vendors so they could receive the guidance to develop competencies for integration into a mainstream activity.”
She said there are currently 150 small businesses housed in the Charlotte Street mall. Beckles described the renovation plan as an intervention. She said two other State entities in Port-of-Spain would be included in this new development under one entity.
“It will serve to significantly boost the economic performance and attraction of this iconic edifice that once served the capital city’s historic market. In so doing, the scheme would result in the rebranding of three malls- the East Side Plaza, New City Mall, and 43 Independence Square as the single entity under the Port-of-Spain Shopping Complex Limited.
”The project will be funded by an Inter-American Bank loan and would improve the health and safety aspects of the building.“
It will elevate the building’s accessibility and functionality and revamp the physical infrastructure, including electrical, plumbing, and air condition systems- the scheme will also see the introduction of new cost-saving green building initiatives such as thermal induction for the roof, installation of a chilled water air condition system and increased optimization of natural lighting.”
Also, The Minister of Rural Development and Local Government, Senator the Honourable Kazim Hosein, hosted a historic meeting with all Mayors/Chairmen and Chief Executive Officers of the 14 Municipal Corporations together with personnel from our state agencies to address concerns relating to management and productivity.