Third District Representative Julian Fraser believes the controversial airport expansion is nothing more than a sham.
“That’s an illusion as far as I am concerned. It’s not going to happen,” Fraser said at a public meeting in Sea Cows Bay last night.
Government had said they are on the hunt for an investor to design, build, and operate the airport for about 20 years before handing it over to the state.
However, Fraser said the National Democratic Party government must prove the project is feasible.
“First they have to show us where they have the private investor. And if they don’t have a private investor they have to show us if they are going to invest in the airport, they have to show us where they have airlines that are going to use the airport before we sign on to something like this,” he said.
Not against the expansion
The Third District Representative said while better air access is needed, the undertaking must be done right.
“I am not going to stand here and say I am not in favour of better means of getting in and out of the Virgin Islands because I think we do need better means of getting in and out. But what I do think we need is to be responsible and a means that is going to be feasible to the country. Not just any old means,” he reasoned.
The expansion project will see the runway at the Terrence B Lettsome Airport lengthened from 4645 feet to about 7100 feet in order for large aircraft to land in the territory.
The project was initially slated to cost $153,432,572. But according to government’s proposed Recovery and Development Plan, that figure now sits at $250 million.
The Premier said the jump in the cost is because the terminal at the airport will also be developed.
Copyright 2021 BVI News, Media Expressions Limited. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or distributed.