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Sep 3, 2013

Progress Report on Hundred Street Infrastructure Project

Believe it or not, eighty-six streets have been cemented or paved since the Belize City Infrastructure Project got under way. The Mayor promised one hundred, and that is a goal he plans to reach. To do so he has to put a great deal of faith in the contractors doing the work…and like everything else…that has its ups and downs. One of the high points is that a few of the contractors have begun to work around the clock, which minimizes the inconvenience to residents. And one of the lows is that with such a high volume of work being done, there are bound to be some slip-ups in the finished product.

 

Darrel Bradley, Belize City Mayor

Darrell Bradley

“We have always encouraged the contractors to work at night. One of the things that we have…I mean, whenever you do an infrastructure project like this, at any given time we are engaged with at least five contractors at minimum. Some contractors use good practices, other contractors use not so good practices. That particular contractor is very efficient, he does very quality work, very inexpensive and he will finish the thing fast because he will work on weekends and he will pour at night. A lot of the concrete is supposed to be poured at night when you don’t have that heavy beating of sun on the concrete, so you’re supposed to be pouring in the evening or at night-time. And we’ve worked with several of our other contractors…of course they have to be worrying about overtime and issues like that and many of them are adopting that model. We’re using a particular contractor along Port Loyola, doing Faber’s Road, Gill Street, Nurse Findley Crescent…and again he works in the night and on the weekends in addition to during the day, so that those works are able to be finished faster than normal. We have had some issues and I will also want to say this…that when we are doing the volume of work that we’re doing in terms of streets…at present our count is at 86 streets that we’ve concreted – you will get bad pours, you will get works that need to be remedied. Many of our contractors are people who do international projects…they’re cleared with IDB projects, those kinds of things. They do works together with Mexican counterparts. We had difficulty, and this is a very expert contractor…we had difficulty on Freetown Road and before that street was signed off we required certain parts of it to be taken up and fixed. We had difficulty on Lawrence Avenue as well, and this is in Lake Independence. We’ve required certain portions of the street fixed before we sign off. All of the works have a certain retention, so we’ll keep a certain amount of the contractors’ money until a six month period passes, and what that does is that it allows us to at least ensure that for six months this thing holds.”

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