$667.9 Million Set Aside for Development of Sport and Recreational Facilities

Funds totaling $667.9 million has been set aside in the 2007/08 Estimates of Expenditure for the Development of Sport and Recreational Facilities.
As set out in the Estimates, which are now before the House of Representatives, the project, which is being implemented by the Urban Development Corporation, was established to preserve and conserve cultural heritage; enhance the blossoming of creative talent; promote cultural fraternity in the Caribbean; stimulate and deepen cultural exchanges with regional countries; design training programmes; and develop human resources through agreements with countries within the sub-region.
The targets for Jamaica for this fiscal period include: completion of the east practice field at the Independence Park complex; completion of the football field and spectator stand at GC Foster College; tender evaluation and contract award and the commencement of restoration works on phase two at the Port Maria Civic Centre; and start of implementation of the Montego Bay Convention Centre.
It is also anticipated that work will begin on phase three of the Montego Bay Sports Complex, along with spectator stands, fencing, and playing field. A contract is to be awarded for the Simon Bolivar Cultural Centre and some 70 per cent of the civil work is to be completed.
Up to last month, some of the physical targets attained as it relates to the Independence Park complex were: construction of a perimeter fence around the complex; relocation of six old towers to Stadium East; refurbishing of the National Arena’s electrical and air-conditioning system; and construction of two tennis courts and support facilities.
Also, construction was done on seating, sanitary/changing room facilities to enable the facility to be used independently of the National Stadium. A car park was constructed, and lights and drains were installed.
In addition, the National Stadium Police Station was relocated to the north-eastern section of Arthur Wint Drive; the football field was completed to meet international standards; rehabilitation of the stadium was completed and the stadium East seating and change room facilities were completed.
Meanwhile, upgrading of plumbing and electrical works was undertaken at the GC Foster College, and at the Montego Bay Civic Centre, work was completed on buildings and the car park, along with landscaping. At the Port Maria Civic Centre, phase one of the restoration of the eastern section of the courthouse was completed, along with designs and contract documents for phase two. Evaluation of prequalification submission was also done. The Montego Bay Sports Complex saw the construction of infrastructure works (phase two); preparation of drainage and base for all-weather track; and prequalification submission evaluated and approved.
The loan agreement document for the Montego Bay Convention Centre is being reviewed by the Attorney General, while the designs and costing was submitted to the UDC for approval.
The Venezuelan Investment Fund (BANDES) is providing $461.9 million in grant for the project, while the Government of Jamaica is contributing $205.9 million.

JIS Social