Vendors get attention

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The St. John’s Development Corporation (SJDC) has moved to address the concerns of relocated vendors one day after the vendors voiced their displeasure to the media.
Those concerns centered on the dust, stones and pungent odour coming from the city’s sewage system adjacent to their new vending area.
The vendors are expected to spend three weeks at the temporary site to allow the SJDC to renovate the Heritage Quay Vendors Mall at a cost of $1.5 million.
Chairman of the SJDC, Bernard Percival, said, “We were trying to rent some mats to be able to assist … those mats were going to cost about $27,000 … we didn’t think that that’s practical … we have looked at another possibility which we are going to try to implement this evening, when the area is accessible.”
Percival said, “We’ve been in touch with the Central Board of Health (CBH), and also with National Solid Waste Management Authority (NSMA), and they’ve been doing some work today… so that smell has been eliminated today.”
The vendors said that although the time and location are not ideal, they will cooperate with the SJDC while it works on modernising the mall.
SJDC said that the renovation of the Heritage Quay Vendors Mall will be complete in three weeks, and the vendors will enjoy larger kiosks, roomier display areas for their goods, LED lights, and modern-day fixtures and fittings.
While the vendors are relocated, Percival said that they are putting the signage in place to direct the tourists towards them.
The compensation for the disruption to the vendors is said to be “one month free rent.” The Chair of the SJDC added that, “in the compensation package, we will be looking at each vendor individually to see how best we can accommodate him or her … whether in the waiver of rent for additional periods or even waive the arrears of rent which they have for the corporation at the moment.”  

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