JIS News

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  • Government is spending $280 million to repair roads in sections of West Rural St. Andrew, under the Jamaica Emergency Employment Programme (JEEP).
  • This was disclosed by State Minister for Transport, Works and Housing, Hon. Richard Azan, following a tour of National Works Agency (NWA) projects in the area on February 16.
  • Mr. Azan, who was accompanied by representatives from his Ministry and the NWA, assessed the status of the works and got a first-hand look at the condition of other roadways.

Government is spending $280 million to repair roads in sections of West Rural St. Andrew, under the Jamaica Emergency Employment Programme (JEEP).

This was disclosed by State Minister for Transport, Works and Housing, Hon. Richard Azan, following a tour of National Works Agency (NWA) projects in the area on February 16.

Mr. Azan, who was accompanied by representatives from his Ministry and the NWA, assessed the status of the works and got a first-hand look at the condition of other roadways.

He told JIS News that the Boone Hall Road is one of the major projects that are currently being rehabilitated at a cost of $145 million.

“We are doing some V-drains and overlaying of the entire road. There was a problem where you had water coming from the hillside and we have to put in some French drains there to take the water into the major drains,” he noted.

Mr. Azan said sections of the roadway in Airy Castle, Stony Hill, will also be repaired in a similar fashion, at a cost of $135 million.

The State Minister also informed that additional road works will be carried out in West Rural St. Andrew, during the 2015/16 financial year.

These include sections of Golden Spring, Mount Airy, Brandon Hill, Mount Zion and Coakley. He told JIS News that the NWA is currently working to produce financial estimates and timelines for the proposed projects.

“When we have the estimates and as soon as the funds become available, then we will decide on the priority, and (have further discussions) with the Member of Parliament and then we will know exactly where to go from there,” he said, adding that “we are trying to see what can be done in the 2015/2016 budget year.”

Meanwhile, Member of Parliament for the area, Paul Buchanan, in expressing appreciation for the works currently underway and for those to come, said the people of West Rural St. Andrew are encouraged by the effort being made by the Government.

“This is encouraging. It is a response to some of the entreaties I have been making to Government. This is a very critical area. It is coffee country, one of the little bread baskets of rural St. Andrew… and the Minister’s response is encouraging,”  he added.

Mr. Buchannan said the tour is a further expression of the Government’s intent to treat with the infrastructure problems of the country. “It is particularly encouraging, because they have to be performing literal financial miracles to find the money to do all of this and it is a step in the right direction,” he said.

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