New Falmouth Market Open
After a construction that lasted several years, vendors were finally relocated to the new Falmouth Market, now located on the street that bears its name: Market Street. On Monday, October 8, 2018, vendors were given no option, but to move to the new location.
Market Still Under Construction
One would think that all would be ready by this. However, the market is still under construction. Thankfully, it has reached the point where it can accommodate the vendors and be operational. On the other hand, it is not clear when all construction will be completed.
Below we see Ben Dung vendors plying their wares on the ground as the facility is still not yet ready.
First Day of “Ben Dung”
Today marks the first day of “Ben Dung” (from the English “Bend Down”), which is nationally famous as the largest mid-week market in Jamaica. This market has caused much concern as it continued to grow above the capacity of the Tharpe Street location. It brings thousands of people (vendors and buyers into Falmouth each week.
The Trelawny Parish Council aims to collect all fees hassle free from vendors by employing a cashless system. Previously in the old location, market fees were collected manually by workers from the parish council who went from stall to stall.
Oftentimes they were turned away by persons who claimed to not have made anything as yet to pay them. Needless to say, this was not an efficient, profitable system.
“This market, under my watch must be the first market to make a profit in Jamaica. So it is some big goals, but I am going to tackle that. And one of the ways… we have already commissioned persons to design a cashless system for us. So every vendor that is going down that market will have a card. You swipe your card at the gate. So if you swipe your card and there is no money, no entrance, “Chairman of the Trelawny Municipal Corporation, Councilor Colin Gager told Jamaica Observer reporters.
Old Stalls Demolished
The existing stalls in the old Tharpe Street bordered market were demolished and anyone found vending in the area is liable for prosecution. This includes having their goods confiscated.
Falmouth’s Southward Development Continues
So, Falmouth’s southward development continues. First, there was the construction of the 24-hour Texaco gas station. In short order, it was followed by the construction of a plaza next door (to the north of the gas station).
On the other side of Market Street (on reclaimed land), what has been touted as one of the largest shopping complexes in the Caribbean is now under construction.
Upon completion, it is expected to span from Market Street up to what is locally known as “little bridge” at the eastern entrance to Falmouth (from the Rock main road).
Residents are excited about KFC coming to town which will be located in the shopping complex. Already, the staff is being recruited.
The entire southern section of Falmouth (east of Market Street) up to Martha Brae is expected to be developed into Falmouth’s new business district. This, as the town’s rapid growth, continues, which started with the Falmouth Cruise Ship Pier.