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Govt confident Wharf will be ready for Breakaway

Government is confident it can get wharf facilities at Dockyard prepared in time for the arrival of the largest ever cruise ship to visit Bermuda next month.

Norwegian Cruise Lines flagship

Breakaway liner is scheduled to make its first stop in Bermuda on May 15.

And according to Public Works Minister Trevor Moniz, upgrade work on the west end’s Heritage Wharf facility is on schedule, despite being hit by poor weather conditions.

The Wharf was completed in 2009 at a final cost of $60 million — a 70 percent increase on the original quote of $35 million.

And the project sparked further controversy earlier this year after it was revealed that necessary upgrades to the facility will cost the taxpayer a further $22 million.

A row also broke out between Government and the Opposition after it was revealed that some non-Bermudian specialists had been drafted in to help complete the modifications by next month’s deadline.

Upgrade work began two weeks ago and, according to the Ministry of Public Works, “a significant amount of work” has now been completed.

Noise mitigation measures have been undertaken and construction crews have built six driven piles and large steel frames. Eight of the permanent works piles, which are three feet in diameter, have also been driven to a depth of 120 feet.

The Ministry pointed out that the welding is quite intensive which requires teams of two welders to work in tandem for eight hours to compete and all welds are tested to ensure compliance with quality control criteria.

Preparation of forms and fixing of steel reinforcement for concreting has commenced on the precast elements of the work and some of these will be cast this week.

“All this has taken place despite the challenging weather conditions that have reduced the number of days that we could operate on the water,” Public Works Minister Trevor Moniz said.

“Fortunately we have been able to work with the construction team to work more efficiently during these periods of bad weather, preparing materials and equipment on land in readiness for the clear days that allow work to progress.”

Mr Moniz said Government was “confident” that the pier will be ready in time for the arrival of

Breakaway, but added that work on the project will continue during the summer for progressively higher design wind speeds.

“By midseason we will have a structure that will be competent for moored vessels in wind speeds of a sustained 45 knots,” Mr Moniz said.

“To reach this level of strength we need to complete concreting works to two additional mooring dolphin structures, one to the north and one to the south of the main dock. These structures also allow clean unobstructed lines for the mooring ropes of the larger vessels. In addition we will be installing important safety upgrades to the dock, providing deck furniture in the form of safety railings and ladder access to the water for recovery of persons in the event of any accidents.

“We are extremely pleased with the collaborative approach to working on this project that has been evident from all parties on the site with all contributing to progress and driving the project forward to completion. This project is one that the contractors have very much taken ownership of and are clearly looking to produce a completed structure to be proud of.”

Giant: The Norwegian Breakaway

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Published April 08, 2013 at 9:00 am (Updated April 08, 2013 at 12:44 am)

Govt confident Wharf will be ready for Breakaway

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