Executive Assistant in the Ministry of Infrastructure, Port Services and Transport, Silas Wilson, has explained the reason for the halt in construction of the Bois D’Orange Bridge Reconstruction Project.
The contract for the $11.1-million World Bank-funded bridge was officially signed on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2013, but construction activity slowed to a halt more than a month ago.
Wilson said the contractor’s suppliers provided girders – support beams used in construction – which did not comply with the specifications and “as such were not accepted by the consultant”.
“The contractors has been sourcing the same from alternative suppliers. The bridge is built upon piles and the girders are an important item integrated into the design of the bridge. Until the specified girders arrive in St. Lucia, the project will not be able to continue,” he said.
Wilson assured taxpayers that the amendments will not cost them anything.
“While some adjustments will have be made to the project completion date, there are not expected any additional costs to the Government of St. Lucia,” he pointed out.
The project was awarded to the joint venture of Construction and Industrial Equipment and Soluciones de Cimentacion through international competitive bidding.
The 18-metre single-span composite road bridge was designed by FDL Consult Inc., and the design was reviewed and approved by the US Army Corp of Engineers.
FDL Consult Inc. said the bridge will be built to accommodate four lanes of traffic in keeping with the government’s focus on future planning.
Traffic was rerouted through a nearby bypass bridge after construction began on the new Bois D’Orange bridge.