Jamaica News: The tender process for the local component of construction works under the Southern Coastal Highway Improvement Project (SCHIP) is slated to begin shortly.
Prime Minister, the Most Hon Andrew Holness, made the disclosure during his presentation in the 2019/20 Budget Debate in the House of Representatives on March 19.
SCHIP is part of the Government’s strategic development plan for the unlocking of the growth prospects on the south coast by connecting Negril, Westmoreland to Port Antonio, Portland via a modern highway system.
“The construction of this highway network will enable easier travel around the island, enable sustainable utilisation of existing natural resources, and provide for the future development of the island’s tourism economy,” the Prime Minister said.
He informed that design work, land acquisition and interagency coordination, particularly between the National Works Agency (NWA) and the National Water Commission (NWC), are far advanced.
Civil works are anticipated to commence in the first quarter of fiscal year 2019/2020 under five contract packages – Serge Island to Cedar Valley, 11.74 kilometre (km); Morant Bay to Serge Island, 14.7km; Manchioneal to Fair Prospect, 8.8km; Hordley to Long Pond, 4.16km; and Morant Bay to Prospect, 9.55km.
“Each work package is expected to have a duration of 14 months, and given that the work packages will start at various times, the total life of the project is expected to be 36 months,” Mr. Holness said.
SCHIP entails the construction of a 16km, four-lane highway with safety barriers from Harbour view to Yallahs, to be undertaken by China Harbour Engineering (CHEC) at a cost of US$110 million.
Ninety-six kilometres of road will be rehabilitated from Yallahs Bridge in St. Thomas to Port Antonio in Eastern Portland along the existing road alignment to reduce corners, improve safety and open up access to lands, which may be of touristic value.
“This work will be supervised by the NWA and executed by local contractors under subcontract from CHEC [at a cost of] US$74 million,” Prime Minister Holness said.
He said that the project also includes renovating 26km of roads from Morant Bay to Cedar Valley by local contractors under subcontract from CHEC. The value of this work is US$11.4 million.
The project will also see the extension of the East West Toll Road from May Pen to Williamsfield, just outside Mandeville at a cost of US$188.5 million.
Source: JIS News