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Architectural firm offers to design gov’t facilities free

The West End ferry terminal days after Hurricane Irma. (BVI News photo)

The government has accepted an offer from architectural firm OBM International (OBMI) to do work on the West End Ferry Terminal, as well as a warehouse at the cargo facility in Port Purcell.

The two structures each ,sustained extensive damage during the September 2017 hurricanes and requires complete rebuilding.

While noting that OBMI has been doing business in the territory for half-a-century, the architectural firm said it was happy to offer its professional services at no charge to government.

“We would like to actively participate in the rebuilding of our territory. We are proud to donate our time and resources of staff across offices to work on these key projects that will be instrumental in moving our community forward,” said Managing Director of OBMI BVI, Marvin Flax Jr.

OBMI Chairman, Tim Peck said a cross-section of international architects will be also be working on the two state-owned facilities.

Meanwhile, Acting Managing Director of BVI Ports Authority, Alfred Henley said with OBMI donating its services, now is the opportune time for the ports authority to modernise its facilities.

“We cannot thank the company enough, and I am looking forward to their designs,” Henley added.

Premier Dr D Orlando Smith said the architectural company is one of several private organisations that he has held talks with to support BVI recovery.

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21 Comments

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  1. Watch the budget says:

    See if they can be built for under $100 million each.

    • quality assured! says:

      this company usually does a lot of high end top class buildings/projects… would be nice if they can keep the building/finishing costs low but remember these facilities are being seen/used by visitors to our Territory as well… so if they go high it will be worth every penny when its done!

  2. Thank God! says:

    Thank you Lord!

  3. Concerned person says:

    Great thanks in advance thats what we are talking about companies that benefited being here giving back thanks again

  4. Bohica says:

    will there be a ferris wheel?

  5. Judge says:

    Looking favour with future gov projects?

    • Mr Moore your donkey in me says:

      Even if they looking favor(not saying they are),one hand can’t clap. Sometimes you got to give to get

    • So what? says:

      In case you didn’t notice, the managing director is from here… so why not let them get future projects?! at least they trying to do something positive for the/his country!
      it is going to take a lot of time and effort to come up with sustainable plans for those facilities.. it doesn’t happen overnight and takes a lot of planning and calculations etc. the company footing the bill for this when they could well have the employees working on money making projects… so if they are favored in the future then so be it.. they donating the work now.

  6. The real Boo says:

    Al will soon get an Oscar for all of this acting. Lets see how the Gobernmint will spin this to still give this work to cronies.

  7. E. Leonard says:

    Exemplary example of corporate social responsibility by OBM International (OBMI). Nonetheless, a silver lining in the port facilities damages resulting from Hurricanes Irma and Maria is that the opportunity was presented to redesign/redevelop the ports’ foot print. This project must be more than just designing new buildings.

    Thus, a holistic approach must be employed in redeveloping the ports projects for the long-term. Both facilities are close to the waters edge and critical to government operations and service delivery and should be designed to at least withstand a Cat 3 hurricane. Ports are in the forefront in any recovery effort and should be up and operational in short order after a major tropical weather event.

    Moreover, the redevelopment should be in two phases. Phase 1 is for temporary facilities to get the ports back in operation. Phase 2 is for a long-term redevelopment plan. It should entail a Request for Proposal (RFP) from experienced port development architectural-engineering firms to develop the ports. Responders short listed, contract can be negotiated with one of the qualified firms. A structural sound, functional, affordable yet aesthetically pleasing port facilities are needed.

    • Eagle and Buffalo says:

      Leonardo, real abla! Need to dust off the old previously designed West End project and if it makes sense make the necessary adjustments, if it were not File 13. With autocad, any changes would not be a heavy lift. Though there is an urgent need to get the ports up and running, let’s be smart, strategic and employ some effective long term planning. Let’s seize the opportunity to do the right thing, not just do things right.

      The storms were destructive, changing lives and changing circumstances; nonetheless, they provided the opportunity to effect long-term planning. In the midst of a national crisis, they provided the opportunity to lead, providing an oppprtunity to maximize resources. It is a new opportunity to set, aim for and strike our target.

      What is our aim, our target? If you do not know where you are going any road will take you there; plan the work and work the plan; climb up to the crows nest and take a 360 view of things. Cliches but applicable to VI situation. They (storms) provide an opportunity for national unity, personal introspection, a new direction, a new look into the 21st Century………..etc. The storms exposed the VI disadvantages and vulnerabilities that cannot be ignored.

      Let’s lead like eagles, not careen off the cliff like buffaloes.

  8. Existing Drawing says:

    There was already a proposed design for the West End Ferry Terminal. What happened to that.

  9. wake up... says:

    There is no way any reputable firm would undertake this for no fee…

  10. Giving Back says:

    Congratulations to Managing Director Marvin Flax Jr. and the whole OBMI Team for this endeavor! It is truly a great thing to see a son of the soil doing something FOR his country!
    I pray that many more will follow suit…

  11. Impressive says:

    I hope this will ignite other companies do the same thing. In the words of John F. Kennedy “Ask not what your country can do for you ask what you can do for your country.”

  12. Pony says:

    Congrats to your company ,Mr Flax you always supporting your country I can say for sure you are a good man with people at heart .you are very patriotic and passionate about what you do ..best wish

  13. Observer! says:

    That was what was left after the hurricane. Is that not the departure area still standing?

  14. ReX FeRaL says:

    Bad governance over the last 20 years. Fix this country gojng forward Virgin Islanders, it is your duty to do so.

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