Work to start on Elbow Beach access as stimulus projects get underway
Work on the public access to Elbow Beach in Paget will get underway on May 17 as part of Government’s economic stimulus project.
David Burch, the public works minister, said the Elbow Beach project had been awarded to Smith Hauling & Excavating and was one of nine contracts that have been awarded to date as part of the $13.4 million stimulus programme announced at the end of 2020.
The Elbow Beach public access was severely damaged by Hurricane Teddy last September and has been a safety risk since.
Lieutenant-Colonel David Burch said in February that the repairs for the popular beach would be “high on the list to be addressed well before the summer” and was on a list of infrastructure projects drawn up as part of the stimulus package.
A ministry spokesman said then that the ministry was seeking “a permanent solution rather than a temporary fix”, with a “foreshore protection system adjacent to the stairs to mitigate future erosion”.
Lieutenant Colonel Burch told the House of Assembly today that other projects where contracts have been awarded were:
· The Molecular Diagnostic Laboratory renovation project was awarded to Greymayne Contracting Ltd.
· The Flatts Bridge handrail project has been awarded to Strike Force General Trucking, Excavating and Maintenance Ltd. A site visit conducted this week and the contractor was awaiting a lumber order which was delayed due to Covid-19. It is hoped work will start on May 24.
· Artemis building B Interior Work – Awarded to Integro Interiors Ltd. Long lead time for some materials. Integro is beginning to mobilize the site.
· Darrell’s Wharf still awaiting planning permissions. Contract awarded to Kaissa Limited. Long lead items. Start on site on May 23.
· Artemis Building A - Loading Dock Repairs – Awarded to Next Level Development. Pre award meeting to be held.
· Artemis Building B – Wash-down Area – Awarded to Heart and Soul Construction. Pre award meeting to be held.
· New Plant Inspection Building at Botanical Gardens – Awarded to Daniels Construction. Pre award meeting to be held.
· Verandah repairs at Camden - Awarded to Limestone Holdings. Pre award meeting to be held.
Lieutenant Colonel Burch said the goal of the projects was to increase employment in the wake of the economic downturn caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, to provide work to contractors who did not typically get government work and to upgrade Bermuda’s neglected infrastructure.
He said 93 companies had been approved and pre-qualified for government contracts while five which did not meet requirements had failed to submit requested mandatory documents and were now disqualified.
He said once a company obtained a project, it would be rotated to the bottom of the list to allow other companies an opportunity for work.
He admitted that some of the contracts had got off to a slow start due to long lead times for obtaining materials and “companies having to sort out their outstanding balances prior to award of contract”.
He said there were several other projects out for evaluation, including highways fencing, waste water section landscaping - three projects, dock maintenance work across the island, cleaning Pembroke Canal and roadside vegetation removal.
He said companies which owed government money would be garnished or a payment plan would be put in place before they are awarded contracts.
The Minister said some labour for projects would be drawn through the hustle truck framework with temporary workers referred to the Bermuda Housing Corporation by the Department of Workforce Development for hiring on particular projects.
He said: “BHC will then create Memorandums of Understanding with the various participating contractors to onboard the workers.”
The Minister praised the staff at the Ministry of Public Works for getting the project up and running and singled out consultant project manager Robert Richardson for coordinating the work.
He said: “This project is bearing fruit and one can expect to shortly see a flurry of stimulus activity occurring around the country.”