East Coast road upgrade 80% completed, 70 street lights installed 

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The East Coast Demerara four-lane road upgrade from Better Hope to Annandale is now 80% completed, according to the Ministry of Public Infrastructure.

During a recent visit to examine the ongoing construction of the road, Minister within the Ministry of Public Infrastructure, Jaipaul Sharma was updated on the progress.

The Minister was accompanied by a team of engineers from the Ministry as well as representatives from the contracting firm, China Railway First Group.

It was noted that three bridges along the expansion sites are to be completed as well as the installation of street lights, traffic signs and road markings.

Minister Jaipaul Sharma being briefed by Project Manager, Gao Zeliang pertaining to the Better Hope bridge construction (Ministry of Public Infrastructure photo)

About 70 street lights have already been installed and are working. Approximately 100 more lights are to be installed along the four-lane road and about 205 will be placed on the two-lane road from Annandale to Belfield.

The contract for the road expansion was signed in December 2014 under the previous administration.

Construction commenced in 2017 and was scheduled to be completed in September this year but the Ministry noted that it is now projected to be completed by December 31, 2019.

According to the ministry, traffic management and the extended rainy season contributed to the delay in the completion of the project.

“According to the contractors, they could not have worked at the pace they wanted as this would have caused a backup in traffic along the site. It was explained that the works required the road be destroyed before rehabilitation commence. This would have caused the traffic to move slower at such points,” the statement noted.

Minister Sharma inspecting works conducted on the Mon Repos Market Tarmac (Ministry of Public Infrastructure photo)

Contractors also made complaints about suppliers not delivering materials on time and that the removal and relocation of utilities within the project area similarly contributed to a delay in the completion of road works.

The contractors, however, assured the Minister that they are equipped with the manpower and equipment they need to complete the works.

The project will see about 7.4 kilometres of road from Better Hope to Annandale being upgraded to a four-lane structure and 9.5 kilometres of the two-lane road from Buxton to Belfield being rehabilitated.

The Minister also visited and inspected the works being done at the Mon Repos market tarmac to facilitate vendors.

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