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Building of drain at Bentick Square will necessitate diversions

Building of drain at Bentick Square will necessitate diversions


In order to facilitate the major construction work that will be a part of the Leeward Highway rehabilitation project, significant road diversions will have to be put in place.{{more}}

On April 25, during the official signing ceremony of the contract for the project, it was revealed that the portion of the Road to Leeward from Caribbean Medical Imaging Centre to the Milton Cato Memorial Hospital will be blocked off during the “summer” months.

According to chief engineer Brent Bailey, this is to facilitate the construction of a drain at Bentick Square, which will be constructed in an effort to alleviate the flooding which occurs at the Milton Cato Memorial Hospital, when it rains significantly.

“We have to upgrade the drainage that runs from the highway and that will typically affect the hospital. As we all know, the hospital is usually flooded anytime we have any significant rain event,” Bailey said, while making reference to the flooding disaster of December 2013.

“We have to look at building our structures, bigger, stronger, more resilient so we can avoid the events of 2013 and moving forward. The works that are planned include constructing a culvert. The present design calls for a 1.5 metre diameter, but I think we are going to have to increase the size on those culverts to increase the hydraulic capacity to transfer the waters to the North River. The intent is to construct a drain across the highway, …going around the Victoria Park, down towards the North River, he said.”

Dipcon Engineering Services Ltd is the construction firm that will be working on the Leeward Highway rehabilitation project.

Director Ian Singh explained that his company planned to do major work on the drain in the summer months because school will be on holiday, meaning that there will be a reduction in the flow of traffic into the capital.

Singh declared that the project will “require complete blocking off of the road from the Imaging Centre.” However, he noted that the construction of the drain will not interfere with the main entrance to the hospital.

Minister of Transport and Works Julian Francis highlighted that great care must be taken in the construction of the drain.

“We have to be particularly careful in this aspect of it, to have it right. If we put in a drain there that gets blocked under the road, it is going to be more disastrous than the hospital being flooded, because we are talking about a covered drain under the road around the walls of Victoria Park,” he said.

Therefore, officials in the ministry are pleading with persons to be cooperative, as there will be route diversions, when the project begins.

“That will be one time, when we’re actually doing that work, there will be significant diversions and as such, we will have to have the public’s cooperation,” the chief engineer said.(BK)