Bahrain market revamp plan on track
Manama, July 13, 2014
A BD3 million ($7.9 million) market revamp that stalled when traders refused to move out will finally go ahead, after months of negotiations.
Around 70 fresh produce stalls at Muharraq Central Market were supposed to relocate to a temporary site in February, but traders baulked at paying higher rents at the nearby Hassan Bin Thabet Public Park, said a report in the Gulf Daily News (GDN), our sister publication.
However, they have now agreed to vacate their stalls and move into the temporary facility after reaching an agreement on rates - paving the way for a long-planned renovation of their 36-year-old food and vegetable market.
They will relocate after Ramadan following a visit by His Royal Highness Prime Minister Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa, who issued directives for renovation to begin immediately.
Another 17 traders selling non-fresh goods will also be housed in another location in Muharraq while renovations are underway.
"Merchants' refusal to leave because of higher monthly payments has been looked into and the rates will continue being the same (between BD30/$79 and BD40) as the old market, which will be rebuilt," said Municipalities and Urban Planning Affairs Minister Dr Juma Al Ka'abi.
The new market will feature a shopping complex, hypermarket and separate sections for meat, fish, fruits and vegetables, as well as other kiosks.
It will also include a special area for people who manufacture traditional crafts, government offices, banks, restaurants, cafes, a basement car park with 200 spaces and special loading areas.
The project is being handled by the Muharraq Central Market Company, a subsidiary of Tashgeel for Commercial Buildings Management, and is scheduled for completion within two years.
Work on the temporary market was halted last month after parents complained their children who used the park could be at risk, but will now go ahead as planned.
"There will be special car parks for loading and market visitors that don't pose danger to children and they have been already been built by the Works Ministry, in co-ordination with the Education Ministry," said Dr Al Ka'abi.
Development of the new Muharraq Central Market was announced in January following four years of delays. - TradeArabia News Service