Officials are aiming to complete the UK funded road works by year-end.
The works on the Sir George Walter Highway and Friar’s Hill Road – is being largely funded by a multi-million pounds-sterling grant from the British Government plus counterpart financing from the Government of Antigua and Barbuda.
BHM’s Public Relations Officer, Vickindra Simon, said it was not possible to promise a firm completion date “due to the fact that we don’t know how long this pandemic will last. We also don’t know – even if Antigua gets back to normal – how long it’s going to take
for our international suppliers to be able to send … certain goods and products.”
She said it was only when updates … from the supplier became available that BHM
“would be able to better project an end date for this project. But as of now, we still plan to complete before the year is over.”
Among the components still outstanding, according to Simon, are guard rails (also known as crash barriers) which have been ordered from overseas but have been delayed due to
shipping disruptions caused by the COVID global pandemic.
“As soon as that arrives, we would continue doing the sidewalks from the WIOC gas station on Friar’s Hill Road to Epicurean Drive, and when we are completed with that, we would jump to Sir George Walter Highway from the solar farm to south of Dee’s [gas station],” she stated.
The project has been plagued with delays arising from various causes including disputes between the main contractor, Bahamas Hot Mix (BHM), and local state agencies such as
the Ministry of Works and the Antigua Public Utilities Authority (APUA).
These have centered on issues related to the ownership and/or acquisition of adjoining land to facilitate widening of the road in some instances, and the expenses or holdups caused
by the need to lay down or relocate underground telecommunications and other utility conduits or trunking.
The other significant holdup that the contractors have to contend with pertains to the erection of 29 bus shelters. Nineteen of these are slated for Friars Hill Road, while the remaining 10 form part of the design for Sir George Walter Highway. Six of the 19 sheds on Friar’s Hill Road will be for commercial marketing.
Simon added that a lot of new piping has been installed for the crossroad culverts, particularly in the Woods area which is known to be especially susceptible
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Poor Corona/Covid…..they get blame for everything. The contractor has nothing to lose if they do not deliver on time so we can expect several more excuses between now and mid 2021 jsu in time for a snap election.
Lovell is the one who will set the date for the next election. The PM offered him to do so. No more back pocket, front pocket theatrics. The ball is in Lovell’s court.
What a load of rubbish. You ever negotiated the contract with the contractors should be fired. Have they ever heard of liability and indemnity?
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