A STAGGERING US$298 million will be expended in the reconstruction of the Kumasi Central Market into a modern edifice.
The project would be built in three phases, starting from the Kumasi Kejetia Bus Terminal, which is the phase one, at the cost of US$198 million.
The second and third phases of the project, valued at US$100 million, would centre on works at the main Kumasi Central Market.
The sod would be cut on March 31, 2015 for the first phase of work which would last for 24 to 30 months to start.
The second and third phases of the project would commence immediately the first phase ends, and would also last for 36 months.
Kojo Bonsu, the Kumasi Mayor, who was addressing the press on Thursday, said Brazilian firm ‘Contracta’, which is to carry out the project, is in Kumasi already.
He said the Government of Ghana had secured a $298 million loan facility from the Brazilian government to finance the project.
Kojo Bonsu announced that preliminary works for the start of the project including geomapping had been conducted at the market by the contractor.
He said KMA would compensate owners of houses that would be affected by works at the Kejetia Terminal for peace to prevail.
He also said plans were far advanced to relocate affected shop owners at the Kejetia Bus Terminal to Adehyee and Royal Markets for free.
He added that transport unions at the Kejetia Bus Terminal would be relocated to the Race Course, Sofoline and Abinkyi Market when the project starts.
Kojo Bonsu said in the meantime traders at the Kumasi Central Market could continue to trade at the market until the first phase of work was completed.
According to him, traders at the Kumasi Central Market would only be relocated to a yet-to-be-named place when the second phase of work commenced.
Kojo Bonsu debunked rumours that shop owners at the Central Market would lose their shops after the project was completed.
He pointed out that a company called Engineering Systems and Services Ltd had been contracted to register shop owners biometrically.
According to him, the shop owners would be considered first when the market is completed, urging the shop owners not to panic.
He said about 300 Ghanaians would be employed to work on the project whose completion would help beautify Kumasi.
Kojo Bonsu stated that the reconstructed market would help stop the frequent fire outbreaks being experienced at the present old-looking market.
He flatly rebuffed speculations that some companies or organisations had shares in the new market, saying that the project belongs to the KMA.
The Mayor described the media as ‘partners in development’ and urged them to assist in making the project a success.
The Presiding Member (MP) of KMA, Kofi Senya, said the old market boasts of 12,000 stores, disclosing that the new market would contain 45,000 stores and shops.
He stated that the assembly would ensure that all shop owners at the market would get their shops back after work on the facility was completed.
FROM I.F. Joe Awuah Jnr., Kumasi
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