Mérida, Yucatán — The private sector has an eye on the gritty, city-owned Lucas de Gálvez and San Benito markets.
Entrepreneurs are interested in converting the city’s two main market places into tourist-friendly destinations, said Michell Salum Francis, president of the National Chamber of Commerce, Services and Tourism (Canaco Servytur).
He said the group is awaiting an announcement from City Council that integrates the Chamber into the market’s operation.
Some of that private investment could go into an escalator at San Benito, he also said.
“What we have always emphasized is that there are many cities in other countries, where the markets are tourist attractions and generate an important economic spillover, so if the authorities understand this and, now that we will be working together, we could achieve a important attraction of those two places,” Salum Francis explained.
To make it work, the markets’ tenants would have to agree and understand the concept, especially since they would all be assessed a maintenance fee to fund all the maintenance required to keep the public spaces clean and attractive, he said.
“You can not invest money if people (tenants) are not responsible, so it could be managed like the commercial places where the tenants pay so that the place stays beautiful, painted, to clean the pits and allow to have the expected image and be able to be attractive, ” he said.