In response to concerns outlined in a town meeting in Green Turtle Cay in late November with North Abaco Member of Parliament Renardo Curry, a technical crew from the Ministry of Works evaluated the scope of works for road repaving with work expected to begin early in 2016.
Mr. Curry said after the meeting he took the people’s concerns to the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Works, Philip Brave Davis, who had the Ministry send engineers to inspect the roads and ultimately initiate the road repairs.
“The technical team looked at the roads and saw what is needed in order to get an estimate,” he said.
Mr. Curry noted that they had previously received bids by contractors for road repairs, but they were for sand and seal. “That has now changed and the intent is to pave those roads with asphalt which would be a higher grade and quality for the roads that will run from the town all the way to the Bluff House, which is government road,” he said.
He added that there are some areas with private roads in need of repairs as well. He said that those roads will be scoped and estimates requested to get them done at the same time. He said that “maybe we can arrive at some kind of public/private partnership to have those roads done at the same time.”
Layton Rahman, Chief Civil Engineer in the Ministry of Works, said that they inspected the roads on Green Turtle Cay and found some of them to be in pretty bad condition.
He noted two types of deterioration – “one is standing water which causes potholes, and the other is running water from fairly steep hills which creates rivulets and channels through the center of the road.”
He said that “where there is a problem with standing water we will have to create some kind of drainage channels or raise the level of the road to allow drainage and where the running water is we will have to profile the road to direct the water into proper drainage channels.”
“We now know the type of problems so we can come up with the technical solutions for this and the contractor will come back and measure the roads and give us a cost,” he said.
Mr. Rahman said that they are taking advantage of the contractor having an asphalt plant on the island; as a result the price of the work will be reasonably cheaper than it would otherwise be.
He said there were also some private roads in need of repair “so we need to speak with residents and the Local Council to talk about how we can repair those roads as well because once the asphalt plant is demobilized it would be very expensive to remobilize it again.”
He said when they get back to the office they will design the scope of works in about two to three weeks and then get the cost from the contractor “who we hope can begin work by mid to late January.”
Mr. Curry said that the government roads will be taken care of in very short order. “I want them to know we continue to work very hard for them and push to get things done. We know that the roads were a concern; as a result we are getting ready to bring the relief.”
“This what you call government in action; quick response to the people’s concerns,” he said.