Crab Island start-ups
Crab Island is one of the nine districts of Banjul, capital city of The Gambia. The Crab Island Upper Basic School was established in 1957 under British colonial rule and could accommodate schoolchildren aged between 13 and 16. It became one of the best-known schools in the country, but was closed in 2012 because of the poor state of the buildings.
In 2020, the Ostend-Banjul city link received a European project grant for, among other things, the renovation of those school buildings.
The school is set to be transformed into a multifunctional site with room for a radio station, a music recording studio, a multifunctional concert hall and a multimedia lab.
Environmentally-friendly bricks made of compressed clay dried by the sun will be used for the new part to be built. The former classrooms will be available for civil-society organisations and innovative initiatives with a social purpose.
This way, there will be space for various start-ups, such as a laundrette, the production of traditionally made soap and food processing, including drying and packing high-value plants such as moringa and baobab.
A high-performing system of solar panels and lithium batteries should guarantee the supply of electricity to the site 24/7 and could form a lever for entrepreneurship.
The full regeneration of the Crab Island site will provide a much-needed boost to the local economy.