– costs down to US$50M
Moving ahead with its development agenda that will see an enhancement of traffic flow along the East Bank of Demerara corridor, the Government has retailored the Ogle to Diamond bypass road project to conform with the loan available to execute the major works.
Speaking exclusively with the Department of Public Information, Minister within the Ministry of Public Works, Deodat Indar said the new four-lane East Coast-East Bank Linkage Project will extend from Ogle to Haags Bosch, rather than to Diamond. This move will spare taxpayers approximately USD$158Million.
“What was driving up that [project] cost was a number of connectors on the road,” Minister Indar cited.
Identifying the previously proposed connection at Mocha as a difficult area to execute works, the Minister noted the swamp terrain saw astronomical increases in the total project cost.
“For you to do those swamps, the cost of the earth works pushed up the cost to $208Million. Remember, the Indian Government only had $50Million allocated to this project. So, we had to redesign the project to bring it to the original design,” Minister Indar explained.
The Minister further confirmed that India has accepted the new design for the roadworks. As such, the Government is moving ahead to implement the project that was stalled for five years under the former APNU+AFC Coalition administration.
At the completion of Phase 1 of the project (Diamond to Haags Bosch), Minister Indar said the administration will forge ahead with the extension of the bypass road further up the East Bank of Demerara to Timehri.
The bypass will be seen as a major move to reduce congestion on the crowded East Bank Demerara roadway which also caters for traffic from West Demerara, Linden and the hinterlands, and Timehri.
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