Jul 10, 2016 News
Persons who traverse the East Bank Demerara roadways have long been inconvenienced by the construction works being carried out to transform the roadway to accommodate efficient and effective flow of traffic.
These persons will soon be able to breathe a sigh of relief since the contractors and the Ministry of Public Infrastructure are pulling out all the stops to complete the project by the end of next month.
MPI’s Chief Works Officer, Geoffrey Vaughn, said that works are currently ongoing and they are hoping for completion within the given deadline.
He added however, that some time will be given back to the contractors because of the unavailability of bitumen in the country.
Lack of this material was the only major challenge Vaughn said, but reiterated that they are hoping ‘to wrap up’ the project soon.
Works on Lot One, the Providence to Covent Garden component of the project had originally been awarded to Dipcon Engineering Services Ltd in 2011 for some US$8M. It was initially set to be completed in 18 months, but after three extensions the work had only gone half way by March last year.
According to reports, Dipcon had only completed 59 percent of the contract when all works were “effectively ceased” in May 2015 – two years after the project was scheduled for the completion date of April 30, 2013. What followed after was a discussion with the Company and the Ministry where an “agreeable settlement” was reached. On August 16, 2015, the contract was terminated.
The contract was later awarded to Gaico Construction Inc. and BK International.
Meanwhile, the Managing Director of Gaico Construction Inc., Komal Singh, when contacted, stated that he is optimistic that they will complete the project within the scheduled time frame.
He stated that the East Bank Four Lane Project with identification name “LO2454/BL- GY East Bank Four Lane Extension – Lot 2 Addendum” was awarded to his company on March 11, 2016 with a completion date of August 31, 2016.
This lot, he said, represents part of the Lot 1 that was awarded to Dipcon in 2011.
He further stated that they have completed approximately 45 percent of the work to date in terms of value with most of the physical work already completed.
Singh added that asphalting is the major part of what needs to be done and while the weather poses a challenge, they are trying to schedule their plans to work around this in order to deliver the finished product on time.
“Our team works way beyond the call of duty with a view to have this project completed on time. Over the duration of the project we commence work at 4.00am almost every day. We are optimistic that we will complete this project by August 31, 2016.’ He stated.
Efforts to contact the Chief Engineer for BK International yesterday to get an update on their works were futile.
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