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JIS News

The National Works Agency (NWA) has completed 90 per cent of the rehabilitation work on the road network and infrastructure damaged or destroyed by Hurricane Ivan, which lashed the island last September.
“We have a programme, funded by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) – the Hurricane Ivan Repairs Programme – which is basically a programme that focuses on replacing damaged structures, such as retaining walls, or constructing new walls in areas that were damaged during Hurricane Ivan,” Petra-kene Williams, Acting Communications and Customer Services Manager at the NWA told JIS News in an interview.
Prior to implementing the programme, the NWA examined all the corridors along the road network and noted the extent of damage sustained to various road sections. The roadways were then prioritised, depending on the extent of damage and the amount of traffic on the road (number of vehicles using the route) for the rehabilitation exercise.
“In all, there are some 58 projects that are being undertaken under this programme. Work has started on 45 of them and there are four, which have been totally completed,” disclosed Miss Williams.
Under the programme, retaining walls and gabion walls are being constructed along roads that were severely affected by the rains and floodwaters associated with the category three storm.
The projects, which have been totally completed, include river training exercises in Chalky River, Nine Miles, replacement of sections of the floor of the Sandy Gully and replacement of sections of the wall of Sandy Gully in the Corporate Area.
Other works implemented under the programme include the construction of retaining walls along the Riley to Dias to Glasgow, as well as Kew to Mosquito Cove main roads in Hanover, while walls were also constructed in Westmoreland along the Seaford Town to Pisgah, Bethel Town to Lamb’s River, Ferris Cross to Mackfield and Scott’s Cove to Smithfield main roads.
In St. Andrew, several walls were repaired and in some cases constructed along the Papine to Redlight main road as well as Guava Ridge to Cooperage, Golden Spring to Mt. Airy and Stony Hill to Tom’s River roads. Repairs were also carried on the wall of the Sandy Gully.
The roads in the eastern section of the island have also received attention, including the Fair Prospect to Folly, Section to Silver Hill Gap and Hospital roads in Portland, as well as the Pamphret to Morant Bay, Mt. Vernon to Trinityville, Wheelersfield to Cedar Grove and Eleven Miles to Llandewey roads in St. Thomas.
In St. James, the Guilsbro to Kensington to Mount Industry, and Mocho to Arcadia roads were rehabilitated, as were the Highgate Hall to Stettin, Wire Fence to Warsop, and Albert Town to Allsides main roads in Trelawny. In St. Ann, work was completed on walls along the Green Park to St. Ann’s Bay main road, and in St. Mary, the Broadgate to Tom’s River, Martins to Ballards Valley and Trinity to Fontabelle roads.
To the south in Manchester, four walls have been completed on the Spur Tree to Gutters, Caines Shop to Highgate Hall, and Mandeville to Rudd’s Corner main roads.
“In St. Catherine we have been doing walls on the Bartons to Ginger Ridge, and Bamboo to Worthy Park roads. Those walls are complete as well as Vanity Fair to Tavern Hill, Bog Walk to Ewarton and Spanish Town to Bog Walk. In Clarendon, five projects were completed on the Sour Sop Turn to Danks, May Pen to Sour Sop Turn, Grantham to Trout Hall and Spaldings to Cave Valley roads,” Miss Williams told JIS News. While the majority of the rehabilitative work has been completed, a number of projects are still underway, but should be completed soon.
“In Kingston we are still undertaking repairs to Rome Gully, in the vicinity of Maxfield Avenue, and Hope Boulevard. Those works are approximately 50 per cent complete. We are also working on Jacks Hill Road and Sunset Avenue. Those walls are 90 per cent complete… In St. Ann, work is on-going on the White River to St. Ann’s Bay main road, where a retaining wall is being constructed,” she informed.
This delay in completing the post-Ivan rehabilitative work was largely attributed to delays in awarding contracts for the works as well as in some cases, delays in the execution of contracts awarded, explained Miss Williams.
In the weeks following the passage of Hurricane Ivan, the NWA was called on to clear blocked roads, repair damaged roads and bridges and rebuild those completely destroyed.
The NWA received over 1,650 complaints regarding blocked roads or in some instances, breakaways and also retaining walls or other structures that were damaged by the hurricane.
The total estimated cost for post-Ivan rehabilitative work on the nation’s roads was $224 million.