JIS News

The Northern Jamaica Development Project is set to continue in the current fiscal year, having been allotted $2.2 billion in the 2006/07 Estimates of Expenditure, now before the House.
The project, which is aimed at improving the road infrastructure in tourism centres on the northern coast of the island, falls under the Ministry of Housing, Transport and Works, and was initiated in October 1991.
Extended until March 2008, the project has achieved a number of objectives in its first segment, among them 100 per cent completion of a road surface from Negril to Montego Bay, the resettlement of 440 persons affected by the project, and land acquisition is on-going.
Under Segment Two of the Project, which will see road infrastructure being implemented from Greenside in Trelawny to Ocho Rios, to date four bridges have been substantially completed, road works are 95 per cent completed, all persons affected by the project have been resettled, 90 per cent of utility poles have been relocated, and negotiations for the acquisition of lands have been carried out, with the National Works Agency (NWA) obtaining access to all parcels of land in sections two, three and four.
In relation to Segment Three of the project, which is Ocho Rios to Port Antonio, the relocation of electrical poles have been completed, access has been obtained to all 882 properties that were targeted, the resettlement of persons affected by the project has been completed, and a contract has been awarded.
Meanwhile, under Segment 2A, 95 per cent of land acquisition has been completed, 90 per cent of utility poles have been relocated, resettlement of all persons affected by the project has been completed, and a contract has been awarded.
According to the Estimates, throughout the course of the 2006/07 fiscal year, for segment one (Negril to Montego Bay) of the project, it is anticipated that additional retention payments will be provided to the contractors and householders for land acquisition.
As for Segment Two, scheduled targets include the completion of all civil works related to the construction of the highway, acquisition of parcels of land, and resettlement of all householders. It is expected that under Segment Three, a construction contract will be awarded, consultant supervision will be done; 20 per cent of construction works will be completed, and on-going payment to land owners will be made. Finally, under Segment 2A, it is anticipated that a 27.4 kilometre highway from Montego Bay, St. James to Greenside, Trelawny, will be constructed, and all parcels of outstanding land will be acquired.
Funding for the Northern Jamaica Development Project comes from the Jamaican government, the Caribbean Development Bank, the European Union, the Inter-American Development Bank, and the Overseas Economic Co-operation Fund.