Region 3 pushes for new Vreed-en-Hoop Stelling

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The Region Three business community is hoping to garner funding for the rebuilding of the Vreed-en-Hoop Stelling under the Ministry of Business’s Regional Flagship Tourism project.

The project gives each administrative region an opportunity to submit tourism initiatives which can be developed in their region.

President of the Region Three Chamber of Commerce, Halim Khan, on Wednesday, presented his proposal titled “Waterfront Development Project” to a gathering of potential investors and tourism officials.

Khan explained that the idea is to build a boardwalk, improve the lighting of the facility and develop the vending areas at the stelling.

The Vreed-en-Hoop stelling is currently in a deplorable state.

President of the Region Three Chamber of Commerce, Halim Khan

Khan said given that it is the first infrastructure that greets persons who use the river taxi from the Stabroek Stelling, this will be seen as a way of changing the “face” of the region.

At Wednesday’s workshop, Director General of the Department of Tourism, Donald Sinclair said the objective of Wednesday’s interaction is to look at the viability of the project.

At the end of the day, the regional officials will know “possible sourcing for their projects, training available, what budgetary adjustments are needed, realistic timelines and how gaps in the projects can be filled.”

Business Minister, Dominic Gaskin pointed to the need for the projects to be sustainable even after a change of the Government.

Minister of Business, Dominic Gaskin

“Tourism must be sustainable beyond political transition. You know Guyana is a democracy, Governments come, Governments go at the Central level and at the Regional level. When we decide on our flagship tourism projects when we put investors in touch with the Regions and we invest as a government in marketing the product, that needs to transcend politics,” the Business Minister emphasized.

The other projects were all nature-based.

Proposals made were an Adventure Tour business in Region One, the development of a trail to link three lakes in Region Two, a Victoria Heritage Trail in Region four, upper Mahaicony River Tour in Region Five, East Berbice Water route in Region Six, Bartica yachting destination in Region Seven, Mahdia Kaieteur route in Region Eight, a trek through the Rupununi in Region Nine and a Bauxite Centennial Heritage park in Regino 10.

Region One representative, Mark Atkinson explained that within the Barima-Waini Adventure tour, there will be visits to the Jonestown Monument, Eclipse Falls, Hosoro Falls, Kissing Rock, Warapoka and other areas, along with bird watching, nature trek and culture experiences.

To make this a possibility, the Region wants to build an Awarak Style lodge and refurbish the trail and bridges.

Wilma DaSilva of Region Two explained that the ‘Tri-Lake Tourism Experience’ will see the development of a trail to link the region’s three lakes; Mainstay, Capoey and Mashabo. There will be also efforts to develop Agriculture tourism.

The projects were formulated after consultations with Toshaos, tour guides, businesses and other persons within the regions.

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