2021 will see a flurry of development – President Ali
…says work to commence on bypass road, new bridge, 50,000 house lots
With work expected to start on several transformational projects next year, including the new Demerara River bridge and the Ogle bypass road, President Dr Irfaan Ali has assured that 2021 will see a flurry of development.
Speaking with the media on Saturday, Ali explained that work will also start next year on the 50,000 house lots that the People’s Progressive Party (PPP) promised in its manifesto. Also in the cards is the rehabilitation of hundreds of community roads.
“What you will see next year. I want Guyana to understand, what you will see next year is a flurry of development. You will see, for example, the new Demerara Harbour Bridge, active work commencing,” the President said.
“You will see work commencing on the new four-lane highway. Work commencing on new hotels. Work commencing on our 50,000 homes. Work commencing on hundreds of community roads and the expansion of infrastructure,” he added.
Another potential project in the cards is a bridge across the Corentyne River. For some time, a bridge linking Guyana and Suriname has been teased, with the former PPP Government entering discussions with Suriname on the project.
Following the change of Government, however, talks on the project petered out. Ali was optimistic that negotiations on the bridge will be advanced and the two countries can move forward with the project.
“This is in addition to the Private Sector development that will take place, including new shore bases, new office complexes, private development. And also, we’re working now on ensuring that the development set for the next two years will be understood by all stakeholders so we can plan for this development,” President Ali said.
“This will give you an understanding of the increased demand for quarry and construction material and labour. So, I think once we continue to push this development agenda, we are heading into what you will call good winds pushing us forward. And a lot of the output of these projects will be realised very early.”
As of Sunday, invitations for companies to submit Expressions of Interest (EoIs) for the construction of the new Demerara River crossing have been published by the Government, which has set itself a three to four-year timetable to complete the bridge.
On Saturday, President Ali did a site visit of two locations associated with the project, one in the vicinity of Windsor Estates and the other at Peters Hall, East Bank Demerara (EBD). Peters Hall is the Eastern end of the proposed landing site for the bridge, while it is understood that a road will be laid from the bridge and through Nandy Park.
This road is likely to be connected to the Diamond-Ogle bypass road, another project set to take off next year. The upcoming construction of the Diamond-Ogle bypass road has progressed to the point where the project is likely to be awarded by this year-end.
The Diamond-Ogle bypass project will see some 26 kilometres of road constructed, linking two of the country’s main thoroughfares. This new road link will also be connected to key communities in Georgetown and along the East Bank of Demerara. These include Diamond, Mocha and Eccles – all on the East Bank – and Aubrey Barker Road in Georgetown. These connections will prove crucial in diverting traffic.
RITES Limited, an engineering consultancy company based in India, had undertaken a 10-month design consultancy, which produced a Detailed Project Report (DPR) outlining the draft final design of the bypass road. It is this report which recommended a four-lane highway as most feasible.
Rajendra Sothwal, a senior engineer with RITES Limited, had previously said that the bypass road would include a metal beam barrier, concrete crash barrier, traffic signs, impact attenuators that reduce damage to infrastructure, pavement markings, highway lighting and a raised median that will reduce headlight glare.