Pelican Village tenants want to take over the craft market

Pelican Village on Harbour Road, St Michael could receive a new lease on life as early as the end of this month, if the tenants win the tender bid to manage the outlets there.

In anticipation of taking control of their destiny, they are in the process of forming a cooperative, and have established links with the Barbados Cooperative Society (BCS) to ensure their venture is a success.

The tenants have also formed ties with the Barbados Tourism Product Authority, the Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc, the National Cultural Foundation and the Barbados Museum to draw on their expertise, Managing Director of Bajan Art Forms Onkphra Wells, told Barbados TODAY. Wells is one of the driving forces behind the project.

Minister of Industry, Commerce and Small Business Development Donville Inniss reported last December that tenants had owed the Barbados Investment and Development Corporation (BIDC) some $15 million in arrears, up from $10 million in 2014.

Since then, Government has been seeking to outsource management of the under-patronized Pelican complex.

“The tenants are trying to come together to form a cooperative to take over Pelican Village because the journey with the Barbados Investment and Development Corporation has not been bearing the fruits. I am one of the tenants who is promoting the formation of the cooperative,” Wells said, adding that the tenants believed they could have a stronger organization if they came together.

Wells, one of Barbados’ leading sculptors, said the tenants would look after the creative aspect of the operations, while the BCS would be responsible for management.

“The Co-Operative Society has the taxi service and the credit unions within the organization. We think that establishing links with the cooperative movement will augur well for the future of the village” he said.

The sculptor told Barbados TODAY they had already chosen ten people to sit of the board of directors of the new cooperative, while the various state agencies with which they have established ties will serve on an advisory body.

However, he was mindful of the fact that there were no guarantees that their bid would be successful.

“Interested persons have already placed their bid for the running of Pelican Village. Whoever wins the bid will take over Pelican Village. If our cooperative wins the bid we will manage the village,” Wells said.

When Barbados TODAY visited the once bustling craft market in late June many of the shops were either closed or on the brink of closure, and some operators were already sounding the death knell of the overall village.

There were also reports earlier this year that the BIDC was going after clients for outstanding rent and that some shop owners were locked out of the complex.

9 Responses to Pelican Village tenants want to take over the craft market

  1. Angus Benn
    Angus Benn August 17, 2017 at 4:42 am

    That place dead since they changed it from it original look.

    Reply
  2. Danny Colombian Clarke
    Danny Colombian Clarke August 17, 2017 at 6:26 am

    Angus I agree. I think the “heads” don’t understand that a lot of tourist are coming from heavy commercial areas and don’t want the same when they’re on vacation . Ppl want to interact sometimes in a more relaxed open area . Tell me honestly as a bajan what part of pelican village looks appealing these days ? Craft suits a more open area where the nice items look so much better .

    Reply
  3. Lee August 17, 2017 at 9:16 am

    IDC should have stayed in the business of accommodating WORKSHOP SPACE as a tool to promote industrial diversification . . . and not become retail business landlords. Pelican’s hot and cramped little units are not designed to be used as workshop space. I agree, the old model was more appealing even to locals (with it’s restaurant being he focus).

    The planned cooperative will fail too unless they can convert the courtyard tastefully into a very attractive restaurant and a hub for a rickshaw transport concession

    Reply
  4. jrsmith August 17, 2017 at 9:48 am

    You people should have done this years ago, and be reminded nothing works in barbados ,with the involvement of barbados politicians everything they touch is economic disaster. …. What I would love to call them , must restrain myself………I am scared to say much or else they will blank me……………………….

    Reply
  5. Alex Alleyne August 17, 2017 at 2:29 pm

    You guys must go have a chat with Minister Lashley and make sure he put in a “round-a-bout” at the junction of the Port Mouth so that the people coming out the Port can walk and drive into the village.
    Minister Sealy must make sure the village get some advertising on the Tourist board website. Finance Minister Sinckler must “wipe the slate clean” for all those who stuck it out down in that lonely hole.

    Reply
  6. Donild Trimp August 17, 2017 at 5:20 pm

    “Minister of Industry, Commerce and Small Business Development Donville Inniss reported last December that tenants had owed the Barbados Investment and Development Corporation (BIDC) some $15 million in arrears, up from $10 million in 2014”.

    What about the rent you people owe? Was the rent paid?

    Are you all the same people who refused to pay rent?

    Reply
  7. Kevin August 17, 2017 at 7:53 pm

    After its done they going to call on the same government to give them $help$

    Reply
  8. Paul August 20, 2017 at 9:31 am

    Pelican Village is a total failure.
    Too many “welfare people” and FEW business people in that place.
    For many years IDC did not care about the place and tenants were allowed to avoid paying rent for their units, shame on IDC ! And what Hon. Inniss says about it ? Just releasing figures is not enough Minister.
    Pelican do not need a “cooperative” but serious professional management to convert the place in a successful Business Location. The potentials are there.

    Reply

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