$1.5B Enhancement Project : 11 Albouystown squatters get new homes

…“I glad that Housing do something nice for us” – father of 4

As the Guyana Government pushes ahead with the $1.5 billion Independence Boulevard Enhancement Project in Georgetown, nearly a dozen squatters have been allocated housing units to relocate.
This was revealed by the Housing Ministry’s Central Housing and Planning Authority (CH&PA) on Friday. The CH&PA said the first 11 informal settlers residing along Punt Trench, Cemetery Road and Saffron Street in Georgetown were given the housing unit as part of its relocation and resettlement programme.
These beneficiaries, who met with the CH&PA Chief Executive Officer Sherwyn Greaves, Director of Community Development Gladwin Charles and a team at the agency’s boardroom, registered for low-income, middle-income and young professional homes. The allottees will now be moving forward with a banking institution of their choice to facilitate an affordable mortgage plan.
According to the CH&PA, the relocation is necessary especially since the area being occupied has been earmarked for the Public Works Ministry’s Independence Boulevard Enhancement Project.

CH&PA Head Sherwin Greaves and staff of the Central Housing and Planning Authority meeting with the beneficiaries of the housing units, who will be relocating from Independence Boulevard to make way for the $1.5 billion Enhancement Project

CEO Greaves stated that this is a part of the Government’s response to safely and humanely relocate the squatters to an area that improves their socio-economic wellbeing, while also ensuring that Government’s development programmes progress smoothly.
The allocation will see the beneficiaries being issued with Certificates of Title, signalling legal ownership of their new land and will also give them the opportunity to have legal access to electricity, water and other amenities.
A number of the informal settlers expressed satisfaction with the agency’s response to their current situation.
In fact, Triske Marshall – a father of four – stated, “I glad that Housing do something nice for us, take we out of a lot pressure [and] make our life more easier for us and our kids”.
CH&PA said it will continue to provide assistance for the informal settlers where necessary throughout the relocation and resettlement process.
The $1.5 billion Enhancement Project entails the construction of a double-lane carriageway on the northern side of Independence Boulevard. Additionally, a single-lane carriageway will be constructed on the southern side.
There will be a promenade between the two carriageways which will be 3 metres in width. On both sides of the roads, concrete drains will also be constructed. Work has already started on the project.
The $1.5 billion Albouystown Beautification Project was officially launched in August of this year, and will also include the upgrading of Cemetery Road to four lanes.
During an impromptu visit on Tuesday to inspect the works, President Dr Irfaan Ali made it clear that the project aims to develop the infrastructure in Albouystown as part of the Government’s overall plan to transform communities across Guyana.
“(We’re providing) new areas for recreation, the boulevard, the new lanes of road, the new walkways, enhance the general appearance of the community. But importantly, this project is going to enhance the value here. And it’s not only about this project. We’re going to look at all the cross streets, all the drains in Albouystown… upgrading them into concrete walkways and pathways and concrete roads, where the space will allow. We’re going to clean back all the drainage. We’re going to set aside a piece of land where we’ll take all the services, give people small areas to have common services, so that they would not lose their economic income,” he declared.
According to the Head of State, this is something Government is doing in every community to improve living standards and create value and prosperity.
President Ali also assured that this is not a one-off visit, but rather he would be visiting as many communities as possible.
“I’m very pleased to walk through the entire community today [Tuesday]. As I said, as far as time gives us the opportunity, we will be visiting every single community to ensure that we work with all the people of the country to uplift their lives and to bring development,” he said.