PRESS RELEASE - Works on Vreed-en-Hoop and Georgetown Stellings to commence early next year

16th October, 2019

 

October 16, 2019

The Ministry of Public Infrastructure wishes to inform the general public, especially those who traverse the Georgetown and Vreed-en-Hoop Stellings that rehabilitation works are scheduled for early next year.

In an article published by the Guyana Times newspaper on Tuesday, October 8, 2019 under the headline ‘Ramshackle stairs endanger commuters at Vreed-en-Hoop Stelling’ both the editor and reporter failed to include that a process has commenced for the structure to undergo repairs.

The Ministry observed that the newspaper published “a few planks were changed during the rainy season” which caused commuters to believe the upgrade commenced. We take this time to remind that those emergency works were conducted in the best interest of the traveling public, while the preliminary aspect of the project was ongoing.

It was noted in the said article that the lack of railways along the stairs is dangerous for the elderly and children, as reference was made to a recent incident where an old woman almost lost her balance and fell into the river.

The General Manager of the Transport and Harbours Department, Ms.  Marclene Merchant reported to the Ministry on October 8, 2019 that the Unit is considering temporary facilities to avoid such mishaps from occurring.

More recently, on October 16, she explained that a floating ramp will be constructed this year for speedboats to berth at the Georgetown and Vreed-en-Hoop Stellings, to make the experience for passengers much safer.

Rehabilitation and overall upgrade works at the Stellings will be executed by Transport and Harbours Department, costs for which are pegged at approximately $50 Million.

Only last month, the Ministry hosted a public consultation to include the views of commuters on the upgrade works moving forward. The successful session was conducted on Friday September 20, 2019 at both the Georgetown and Vreed-en-Hoop Stellings.

Under the UKDIFD/CDB program, complete rehabilitation and extension of these facilities will be undertaken. Presently, the Ministry of Public Infrastructure is awaiting a draft Environmental and Social Impact Assessment from the Consultants on the development of the structures. That draft is expected to be completed this month. It will recommend mitigation and monitoring options to reduce environmental and social impacts.

Meanwhile, in November 2019 preliminary designs will be undertaken. This phase will use information gathered from site surveys and investigations to produce informed engineering designs for the project, prior to the detailed design.

The detailed design is expected to be completed by March 2020 and will pave the way for construction to begin.

 

Yours Cooperatively,

Davina Ramdass,

Public Relations Officer

Ministry of Public Infrastructure