“Derelict”, “unsightly” area at CJIA transformed into attractive retail spaces

…extends support to shop owners

In an effort to enhance the area surrounding the Cheddi Jagan International Airport (CJIA), the management of the facility has undertaken significant efforts to enhance the aesthetics of the shops on airport lands.
On Monday the airport’s management said that it is aware of the importance of providing a pleasant environment for users of the airport and has implemented several initiatives to transform the previously derelict and unsightly area into attractive retail spaces.

The current airport beautification project

This area forms part of the security zone of the airport and steps were taken to provide a safe and secure environment for users of the airport. One of the major steps taken by CJIA was the construction of a new facade to enhance the overall appearance of the shops and its immediate environs.
In addition to the physical transformation, CJIA has also extended support to the shop owners. The airport has provided paint and other supplies to the shop owners to assist with a facelift of their environment.
Further, CJIA said that is building a family-friendly space for customers and other airport users where they can relax while using the services of the nearby shops.
Among the enhancement projects that the airport will be embarking upon is the construction of two benabs along with outside seating areas and additional lighting.
Previously, some persons used the area where the squatters are located, to engaged in illicit activities, which were deemed a security risk to the airport.
The issue of squatting at the airport lands has been a long-standing issue that the previous and current Administrations have been attempting to resolve in an amicable manner for numerous years.
In 2015, signs erected by the Cheddi Jagan International Airport to discourage squatting on airport lands were destroyed two days after they were emplaced.
Over the past 10 years, CJIA and the Public Works Ministry (both present and past) have actively engaged squatters and farmers on their illegal occupancy on lands which are crucial for the airport’s activities.

One of the shops which squatters erected in close proximity to CJIA

Squatting activity has occurred extensively on CJIA lands.
Meanwhile, speaking about the airport beautification project, shop owner Emily Pollard has expressed her gratitude to the airport and believes it will help attract more customers to her shop.
She said, “I think it has brightened up the area. Also, before this project, a lot of dust used to accumulate around our businesses, which made it difficult to attract customers.”
The airport’s management has met and engaged with the shop owners and said that it will continue to work with them to improve their environment.