Some 20% of West Coast road upgrade completed

Road widening at Hydronie, East Bank Essequibo, Region Three
Road widening at Hydronie, East Bank Essequibo, Region Three

[] – Despite challenges which delayed the commencement of the expansion works for the West Coast Demerara highway from Vreed-en-Hoop to Hydronie, the project is now approximately 20 percent completed.

Project Coordinator of the Ministry of Public Infrastructure, Kester Hinds revealed that 20 percent completed indicates that significant strides were made; therefore from 2016 the project will move at a faster pace.

According to a government release, the objective of the project is to increase traffic efficiency and improve road safety along the West Coast Demerara highway, not only with the construction of the road, but also a range of programmes aimed at safety education in schools, and public education along with consultancies.

“We’re going to be installing infrastructure that can contribute to enhancing safety on the road in the form of cycle lanes, not throughout, but in some areas. Pedestrian sidewalks and highway lights will be installed in areas where they are absent, (and) high intensity visible traffic signs and proper road markings will be done,” Hinds said.

Road widening ongoing at Anna Catherina, West Coast Demerara
Road widening ongoing at Anna Catherina, West Coast Demerara

The release revealed that the scope of works for the project which is expected to be completed over the next three years, include widening of the road in some areas to accommodate cycle lanes and pedestrian sidewalks, the reconstruction of a bridge at Groenveldt, repairs to existing culverts, capping the entire surface of the road and raising some sections and construction of concrete drains in heavily populated areas.

Additionally the corridor will be widened to accommodate the comfortable parking of vehicles and stopping of passenger vehicles without traffic being disrupted.

“The extensive nature of the work is being done from the Hydronie section coming back to Vreed-en-Hoop… that’s the final 6 km… that’s where we started most of the works and we’ve added the first layer to about 2 km of that section,” Hinds said.

The widening of the West Coast Demerara road from Vreed-en-Hoop to Hydronie is a partnership project between the Government and the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) valued at US$46.8M.

This project which is being executed by overseas construction company Surrey Paving and Aggregate Company Ltd in joint venture with local company, BK International will see approximately 36 km of road being widened.


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