JIS News

Minister of Transport and Works, Hon. Mike Henry, is to seek guidance from the Cabinet on Monday July 13 on resolving the issue of the completion of the Mount Rosser Bypass segment of Highway2000, which has been temporarily halted since last Friday (July 10).
Contractors, Bouygues Travaux Publics, laid off over 200 workers last week, retaining about 40 maintenance workers pending resumption of work. The workers are represented by the island’s two major trade unions – the Bustamante Industrial Trade Union (BITU) and the National Workers Union (NWU).
The disruption has been triggered by an overrun of about US$27 million, due mainly to problems with the unstable soils and unsuitable rock formations encountered on the lands identified for the project.
The Minister says that no geo-technical study was done prior to tendering the contract, and the contractor is protected from any responsibility.
Mr. Henry told the House of Representatives last October that the geological problems included the colluviums/talluviums, loose accumulation of rock and soil debris at the foot of the slope, as well as highly fractured, faulted and folded limestone formations.
He said that the US$27 million takes into account additional earthworks, blasting, drainage impacts, extensions of time, design costs and transfer of geotechnical risk involved in rectifying the situation.
He also stated that the project will utilise in excess of 30 million litres of oil-based products, such as diesel, bitumen and MC 70, which are affected by volatile world market prices.
The Mount Rosser Bypass project, part of the North-South link of Highway 2000, was originally scheduled to cost US$108.5 million and be completed by January 2010. However, this was revised to US$135 million and a new completion date of January 2011.

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