The Feasibility Study and Design for a new Demerara River Bridge has successfully been completed, with a copy presented yesterday afternoon to Minister within the Ministry of Public Infrastructure, Annette Ferguson.
The 57-page final report was presented by the project team, which includes Demerara Harbour Bridge Corporation General Manager and Project Manager, Rawlston Adams; Chief Transport and Planning Officer, Patrick Thompson, and Team Leader of the consulting company, LievenseCSO, Arie Mol.
During the document’s handing over, a rundown on its main conclusions were highlighted, the Ministry of Public Infrastructure disclosed.
From the feasibility study, it was determined that the proposed location of Houston-Versailles was the most ideal.
It was further noted that the bridge should be a low-level one with a movable part and three lanes. This structure, it said, provided the most socio-economic benefits for Guyana and led to the lowest urban environmental impact.
Furthermore, it was recommended that the promotion of alternative transportation routes should be encouraged to lend to the longevity of the new bridge.
The completion of the feasibility study leads the way for the next stage of the processing of realizing a new bridge- the pre-qualification of contractors.
This process has already begun and will conclude on October 17, the ministry disclosed yesterday/
Meanwhile, both Adams of DHBC and Thompson of MPI noted the preparations that were undertaken during the feasibility stage to ensure the successful completion of key components.
Thompson disclosed that during the preparation of the feasibility study, all possible stakeholders, including those from the private and public sectors and neighbourhood and regional democratic councils, were consulted.
In fact, Adams added, the project team met with the Land and Surveys Department for advice on surveying and the acquisition of land.
The team also met with the Environmental Protection Agency yesterday on proceeding with the necessary environmental study.
“All in all, we’re confident that once we work together and everyone puts their shoulder to the wheel, we can get this project moving along smoothly,” Adams said.
Thompson added that challenges, such as land acquisition, will have to be faced but he stressed that the team is up to the challenge.
Upon receipt of the report, Minister Ferguson thanked the team for its dedication to the project and extended special thanks to Mol for satisfactorily delivering the report.
Consecutive administrations have made the construction of a new bridge across the Demerara River a priority.
This was following an explosion of growth on both sides of the river.
The current structure, which links the city to Essequibo, is almost four decades old and despite in good condition, has been racking up significant costs for Government.
The cost of maintenance alone has outstripped revenues.
Daily there has been congestions as the bridge is unable to efficiently take off the 10,000 average vehicles daily that crisscross it.
Engineers have been toying with a number of locations including one at Hope, further up on the East Bank of Demerara.
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