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Gov’t pumps over $18K to rebuild landmark on eastern Tortola — Premier

Premier Andrew Fahie

Government has channelled more than $18,000 into rebuilding a landmark near the Queen Elizabeth Bridge on the eastern end of Tortola.

Premier and Minister for Tourism Andrew Fahie gave that indication while responding to questions by Eighth District Representative Marlon Penn during the recent sitting of the House of Assembly.

“The structure is being built to showcase the history and the culture of the territory and to provide an additional tourism talking point for tour guides, taxi and residents,” the Premier said.

The Premier said signage would also be installed to, “further showcase the historical relevance of the structure … and for a richer experience.”

He continued: “The structure is being built with concrete instead of wood to serve as storage for tourism-related items and to be more resilient during storms. The cost of the project is $18,289.26 in materials and labour.”

He also said the structure was previously constructed in wood but was destroyed during the catastrophic weather events of 2017.

NDP approved it

In the meantime, Premier Fahie mentioned that the project was not approved by his new administration.

Fahie made that distinction after Penn asked why, as the district representative, he (Penn) was not informed of that the project had commenced.

Fahie said: “The BVI Tourist Board has informed that the district representative was a part of previous meetings held before my tenure in government when the project was discussed. And as such, his consultation was sought in the past seeing that the project was already approved by the previous administration, and not this current administration. The territory which includes the district in question is aware that we are rebuilding our infrastructure.”

However, Penn argued that dialogue with constituency leaders are important.

He said: “I think it is best when we are doing these types of community initiatives that we have a proper dialogue with the representatives and the community again even if it was something that was done previously.”

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13 Comments

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  1. Tolian. says:

    $18k for a tiny wood shed??? How can that possibly cost so much??? Highway robbery of the public purse yet again.

    Like 11
    Dislike 4
  2. see says:

    18k for a couple palletts of block and labor. Ripped off once again

    Like 6
    Dislike 1
  3. Me says:

    4 plts of blocks 3 yards concrete ahalf bnld steel half bndl lumbeŕ and 3 lengths of galvalume plus man power could never add up to 18k

    Like 3
    Dislike 1
    • Exactly says:

      Say a mason can install 20 blocks in an hour, it would take about 16 hours or two days to do the work (FYI, standard US contractor production rate is about 300/day). The man will need a helper. So now we have 2 workers for 2 days. But it’s hot, you have to drive all the way to East End, and many other inefficiencies, so call it five days. So, we now have 10 work days. There needs to be a supervisor to coordinate all this, so two days for him to order 3 pallets of block, coordinate the work, get the supplies there, and then 10 days to supervise. We now have 22 person-days in the budget. Someone will have to paint it, so another three days (should only take one) of labor. We have to put lights in in, so another two days of electrician work. Plus the roof, so another two days, a carpenter to put a door/windows for 2 days. That brings us up to around 32 days of workers. If labors charged at $ 250 per day , we’re now up to about $ 8,000 in labor. Block cannot cost more $ 3,000 if you paid $ 10 each (they cost about $ 5 ea), mortar prob no more than $ 500, a small piece of galvalum $ 100, lumber $ 500, mortar mixer rental $ 500, so call it $ 4,500 in materials. That brings us up to $ 12,500, doing it island style, taking it slow and easy. A competitive bid would be in the $ 8K range.

      I’m not a builder BTW. You can figure all this out in about 20 mins using the internet. So, as other people have pointed out, government is either getting fleeced (like they did when they paid $ 45K per 200 sf shack near ferry terminal in RT) or they are giving someone a handout.

  4. Lodger says:

    Whilst on the subject of restoring landmarks, wasnt the contract for the demolition of the old bridge supposed to include reconstructing it somewhere as an attraction? What ever happened to that and the financial part of the contract for the relocation? Anyone know where it is?

    Like 2
    Dislike 1
  5. ethics says:

    Not very ethical Mr premier. Commom courtesy -let the Opposotion know that the project was going to move forward. All that comes under TRANSPERENCY

  6. When you dont know says:

    Landscaping signage get the damn details

  7. rastarite says:

    Complete waste of public money. Public toilets at Trellis Bay would have been a much better idea

  8. Spook says:

    What about a robot man holding the cup to collect the toll at the bridge and a prerecording saying “yes man, have a ivry day”.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Road at east end part should repair it first.

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