The Linden waterfront project  

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Dear Editor

We are certainly pleased with the allocation of $30 million for the Linden Riverfront Development by the

Ministry of Public Works, as recently reported.

It should be noted that while the investment is in response representations made to the Ministry over

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the last several years, and recently, as the 2021 budget was being prepared, it was not designated to

any specific project

Linden Riverfront Development is critical to the development of Linden and has engaged the interest

and attention of the community for the past 15 years. It is felt that the development of the Linden

Riverfront will be a primary driver of overall development of Linden; it will address, among other issues,

waste management, enhancement of port facilities, promotion of tourism, improvement of drainage

and reduction of flooding, and recreation.

The Linden Riverfront Festival mentioned by Minister Edgill was created to brand and promote the

development of the Linden Riverfront. The Linden Riverfront Development Forum, an essential feature

of the Festival, promotes the awareness of the Importance of Riverfronts in Guyana and specifically

Linden. This forum has been attended by the Mayors of Riverfront towns and communities, including

Georgetown, Bartica, New Amsterdam, and Corriverton. The Linden Riverfront Development Task Force

is a product of deliberations at the Forum.

There is no national strategy or policy on Riverfront Development.

The representations made to the Ministry and other Government Agencies, including the Ministry of

Finance, Ministry of Local Government/Communities and the Ministry of Trade/Tourism was guided by

the draft goals and objectives for the Linden Riverfront Development. These include; Access along the

Riverfront, Enhancement and Use of Historical Monuments, Economic access and Opportunity at All

Levels, A Working Riverfront and Improved Port Facilities, Environmental Stewardship, and

Private/Public Sector Alliance.

It is projected that an initial investment of a least G$500 million over 5 years is required to kick-start and

sustain the Linden Riverfront Development and build on the historical G$100 million invested through

the LEAP Program. A Linden Riverfront Development Master Plan (LRDMP) is needed to effectively guide

and focus the development of the Linden Riverfront. This is the part of the recent

representations/requests made to both the Ministries of Public Works and Finance.

The G$30 million investment was initially reported to Linden Stakeholders in a consultation led by the

Design Engineers in June 2021. Two projects/locations were subsequently identified: the Coop Crescent

and the Wismar market Area/Warf on the Eastern and Western Shores, respectively. The Ministry’s

Design Engineers did the requisite investigations and were scheduled to provide their findings and draft

designs.

The $30 million is grossly inadequate and will require additional investments in 2022 to complete either

of the locations. Ideally the initial investment should have been about $150 million. That amount would

facilitate the completion of the 2021 program and initiate the preparation of the LRDMP.

Minister Edgill asserted that the funds should be spent where it would have the greatest immediate

impact. However the Minister brings an uninformed perspective on Linden and a lack of awareness of

the tenets of Riverfront Development, as indicated by the areas he proposed for investment of the

$30M, and his lack of commitment to a multi-year program.

Minister Edghilll asserted in last Friday’s meeting that capacity building was not his focus. This is

unfortunate because the LM&TC’s inability to address waste management, traffic, and to manage

current activities along the Riverfront deters use of the Riverfront and reduces the potential impact on

community wellbeing and health.

The preparation of the proposed LRDMP is critical; it would enhance community cohesion, allow the

consideration various ideas for riverfront development, and provide the basis for long tern funding and

engagement.

Regards

Samuel Wright



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