JIS News

Work to restore the roadway at Friday in the Upper Rio Grande Valley in Portland has restarted.
The restoration work, which began in July 2009, was put on hold, but is now being completed under the Jamaica Development Infrastructure Programme (JDIP).

Residents in the Upper Rio Grande Valley communities in Portland, carefully negotiating the track being used after the main road at Friday was eroded due to numerous land slippages. Work to restore the roadway commenced in November, and is expected to last for six months.

The road was rendered impassable since February 2009, after numerous land slippages resulted in complete erosion of the roadway, causing major dislocation for residents in the communities of Ginger House, Comfort Castle, and Mill Bank.
The communities of Comfort Castle and Mill Bank have been inaccessible to vehicular traffic, creating significant discomfort especially for students, farmers and the elderly.
Speaking with JIS News, National Works Agency (NWA) Community Relations Officer for the Northeastern Region, Natalie Rowe, said the work, which began in November 2010, is expected to last for six months. It will include the construction of a gabion wall, a rubble retaining wall, laying of culverts and pipe drainage.
Approximately 3,000 residents have been affected by the dislocation, and are anticipating its completion.
Commenting on the work being done, resident of Mill Bank, and Chairman of the Portland Parish Development Committee, Linette Wilks, said the residents are “elated.”

The main road at Friday in the Upper Rio Grande Valley area of Portland, was eroded by numerous land slippages as a result of frequent rainfall in the area. Work to restore the roadway began in November and is expected to be completed within six months.

“We saw the equipment and the material being moved in, and with each movement, everybody felt that Christmas had come early, and a new lease on life has been achieved.”
“We hope that some of the difficulties we now face will be eliminated,” adding that “once Friday is restored, we will have a massive celebration in the Valley.”