Castries market rehabilitation plans

By Julita Peter, GIS

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(GIS) – The Castries market will, in the coming months, undergo some major rehabilitation in keeping with government’s overall redevelopment plan for the city of Castries.

Prime Minister Hon. Allen Chastanet, in articulating the government’s plan to develop the city, said the Castries market forms part of that plan, and that improvements to the decades-old facility are long overdue. Built in 1891, the Castries market is well known by locals and visitors alike for food, souvenirs and craft.

“Mr. Popo and his team at the Department of Planning have done an incredible job at coming up with an architectural plan for that facility. The idea is for this to be the showpiece of Saint Lucian products. So we want people to be able to go and smell, taste, listen and feel everything that is Saint Lucian,” Mr. Chastanet said.

The Government of Saint Lucia is investing US$15 million into the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States Competitive Tourism Project. One of the biggest components of this project is to improve the façade of the Castries market through the provision of training for vendors in the areas of merchandizing, sales strategy, customer service and marketing.

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  1. So many Armchair dreamers and you ain’t seen nothing yet. First Bananes, then the Market
    I’m proposing the “Gardens” and beyond. We should consider ourselves very lucky that we
    have young persons in this Government with young, modern ideas, with a world view much
    different from any we have had before. Can anyone of you Visionaries cum luminaries tell us
    of a much needed target, not necessary in Castries, to be Beautified for our history in St. Lucia.

  2. Do you have any idea what the market will look like outside when the development is completed? Have you seen the architectural plan for that facility? Maybe you should first before you express your concerns. Besides we are moving forward, not backwards. If I interpret you correctly, you are also saying that we should not have had traffic lights, cross overs, tunnel, water and electricity, to name a few.

    • No one has seen the plans. Let us hold off all criticism until we see the “incredible” plans drawn up by Mr. Popo and his team. Where are they? BTW, yYou left something off your progress list: a dolphinarium.

  3. Vieux Fort is in need of a proper market people still peddling on the streets. Their lack of vision, Every town should have a framers market. This encourage growths and entrepreneurship. Small framers will have a secure place to sell their fresh produce and other could peddle the wares. Mom and pop stores should be vital part of your economic engine not just for some but for all.

    • Let Kenny do it for you all he is still up you all ass in Vieux-Fort and been there for a long time yet he got jack done,and you all still think he’s the best think that happen to you all down there since chicken backs and breadfruit gone out of style me roro.

  4. Such a majestic building with it’s rustic iron cladding though unsophisticated compared
    to today’s modern Architectural standards, yet Her Majesty, much like a beloved
    great Grand Mother that have served us well for all these years is said to be re-beautified.
    I always loved this building, It’s where I shopped for the best fruits, listened to great
    political speeches on the storied “Market Steps” now that nostalgia has set in for me,
    I realize we can’t stop progress. We in St. Lucia are blessed with great visions to
    witness the manifestation of some sort of dream we all rest our hope upon. Dream on
    my people as i look back with no anger but with dreams of love and love. Be Blessed.

  5. As long as they retain the strong scent of urine, I’m ok with what Mr Popo is proposing.

  6. Where can one go to see these plans?

  7. New Testament Verse of the Day:

    “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the creation of the world.'”

    –Matthew 25:34

  8. Lucianthinkingforeign

    One of the problems at hand is that the structure is too small giving rise to congestion in the interior. Therefore, the whole structure ( interior and exterior compoments ) are contributing to the problems faced. A modern , spacious structure at least 2 story building should be built. Not at all times remaining where we are is the best option because it reminds us of the past, but embracing the present could be the best option.Embracing the present by building a modern market will only to achieve one step in similarity to our more developed counterparts. Visitors only view some of our buildi ngs as achaic after they hsve visited castries and refer to our country as an im poverished third world country. Adapting to changes when it seeks to bring us forward and not backward should be embraced at all times.

  9. There is an opportunity for a museum in the making. St Lucia has very few historical buildings in a good state of repair. Transplant this building somewhere else and use the existing site for something 21st Century and innovative.

    • Like a dolphinarium? Pave paradise: put up a parking lot. Why not move the Castries Market to The Landings? Good-bye: Radio St Lucia, a museum for the Walcotts etc. etc. If it’s authentic, let’s get rid of it.

  10. Mr. Chastanet you are indeed a man with a great visions a sign of one who have traveled,
    have lived and studied abroad, you’re young and seem to have great ideas we need that in
    this fast growing world around us. I noticed how you already have designs for Banans/Ta Tok
    next I would like you to tackle the “Gardens”either re-beautify it or demolish it and build some
    Residential Apartments (do a Survey) I would prefer the former. Enough of the free commercial.

    And now, the great majestic Castries Market – that which have served us so well, survived the
    great ‘Fire’ of Castries, Hurricanes, Political bombardments on the ‘market Steps’ the Revered
    old father of the steps George Charles, me ol’ pal Br. George, and now the great pretenders.
    In the face of any changes, keep the Ol’ grand father Clock.(can you publish the Plans/design?).

    Designed entrance/exits for the Disabled, front and back, wash rooms for the Handicapped,
    top and bottom, Security Stations at top and bottom, Restaurants mainly on the second level.
    a strongly restricted sale of booze with meals, an inter faith room for quiet meditation/prayer.
    If space permits, an Internet Room and Adjacently, space for kids to play while parents shop.
    Stop criticizing the man for traveling a lot; that’s where he gets all his world views; Me Too.

  11. They should also do something about that fish market behind, some days you pass there and its a mess, it stinks….

  12. to me i believe the way the market looks outside should remain like this because it has a historical view. for instance people can look at it and say ohh so this is how the market looked years ago before Castries was developed.

    i saw a picture when the roads were not even paved and to me it was showing where we come from as saint lucians as a people and i was amazed knowing i was not even born yet. to me what that could change is the way inside is so that the issue of flooding and the vendors getting wet is addressed. but if doing a makeover of the entire building is needed then fine. just that we wont have no real historial view of it

    • I disagree, the outside is not nice at all; we can have an updated facility with modern considerations in terms of functionality but also retain a Caribbean look and feel. In my view, we run with the notion of keep it as it looks today then not have a dirt road because that’s how it looked too! Progress but with a Caribbean feel gets my thumbs up.

      • i totally agree with the updated facility but the point i am trying to get across is this building has historical value from the days of our grand parents and great grand parents.

        so if it is removed we will be erasing our history. why do you think the old buildings and other stuff from the battle of the french and English are being preserved by the national trust and which ever organisation. if those things had to be changed and destroyed none of them would not have seen them first hand today.

      • You’ve got lots of taste: all of it bad. Who needs your strip mall vision of “nice?” The Market could look like The Bank of Saint Lucia. Wow. “Progress with a Caribbean feel?” Hilarious.

    • g.w., your concern also came to mind when I read the article. I have not seen the plan and I am hoping that the front face of the market is not radically transformed. After all, this is what gives it identity. That being said, there are a couple markets in Kenya that are identical to it. It appears that there was a Victorian blueprint for some colonial markets.

      Hopefully, they intend to pave the area where the coconut and market produce are sold. It looks hideous when it rains.

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