Chief Secretary Orville London has confirmed that a mural on Garden Side has cost taxpayers a hefty sum of $900,000. The mural is located adjacent to the Botanic Gardens and opposite to the Scarborough Library and Financial complex. Questioned on the figure at Wednesday’s Post Executive Council Media Briefing, Chief Secretary London said the mural is part of the Scarborough Beautification Project.
“The Scarborough enhancement program in fact is under the control of a committee, headed by the Chief Administrator including representation from the Division of Infrastructure and Public Utilities, the Division of Agriculture and the Division of Health and Social Services,” London said.
He noted that most of the decisions as to the actual contractual and procurement issues would have been done by that committee. London was unable to give further details on the matter and referred Tobago News to the Chief Administrator, Dr. Ellis Burris. The Chief Administrator suggested we get in contact with the Project Coordination Unit, Office of the Chief Secretary.
Information from that unit indicated that as part of the Scarborough Enhancement Programme, the Garden Side Street Mural project was implemented based on a request for proposals which was forwarded to a list of interested (at least three groups/companies) local artists. According to the unit, the proposals were evaluated by a committee consisting of members of the Scarborough Enhancement Committee and the Museum Curator.
“Based on recommendations by the committee, the final Mural consisted of a collaborated effort between the various artists/art groups to include, Tobago Art, Studio 15 and Tobago Renaissance. The total cost was $870,000.000,” the response stated. The project had a start date of September, 2012 and had an original deadline of December 1, 2012. It was completed around March, 2013.