The Ministry of Communication and Works has come up with a strategy to prevent utility companies from returning to dig up roads after they have been paved.
Deputy Permanent Secretary for the Ministry of Communications and Works, Jeremy Hodge said this will be done by outfitting roads with various access points that will allow for ‘future development’ to take place.
“We are sleeving the roads which means it’s going to have conduits beneath the roads so that you can run lines underneath the road without digging it up,” Hodge said.
“The electricity corporation, for example, will tell us what size pipes they want to be placed underneath the road and so on. They will be able to access these pipes at varying points and then run their cables underneath the roads. So, the pipes will be there for as long as they (the utility companies) may need it.”
Hodge further explained: “We don’t want to put down roads today and then utility companies want to get under our brand-new roads to develop. Also in the event of a hurricane, wires will already be underground that will allow for a faster recovery of these utilities.”
Project to cost millions
This initiative is part of a multimillion-dollar road development project, which will be a collaborative effort between road developers and utility agencies such as Water & Sewerage, the Electricity Corporation, and telecommunication providers.
Hodge said these roadworks will take place at various locations on Tortola.
One of those areas will run from West End to Pockwood Pond. Other areas to undergo road development are Huntums Ghut, John’s Hole, East End, and a section of Wickhams Cay II.
“I think it (the cost of development) is in the range of about $11 million for those roads and another $2 million will be used for secondary roads,” Hodge told BVI News.
He said all these roads will be fitted with sidewalks, handicap access, and a modern sewerage network.
The ministry said the upcoming development will result in the creation of a ‘work-class transportation infrastructure system’.
“We have support advice from UK technicians that have been sent by the United Kingdom government and local technicians working along with them to receive their requisite training and skill set so that when we develop these modern infrastructures, we can actually maintain them,” Hodge said.
He told BVI News his ministry is now awaiting the required funds from the Ministry of Finance.
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