Tuesday 11 August, 2020

CHEC correcting defects on a section of Mandela Highway surfacing job

A section of Mandela Highway being resurfaced due to reported defects with the original job.

A section of Mandela Highway being resurfaced due to reported defects with the original job.

With the work yet to be completed, contractors China Harbour Engineering Company (CHEC) has found it necessary to carry out repairs to a section of Mandela Highway that has already been paved as part of the widening of the thoroughfare to six lanes at a cost of US$64 million (J$8 billion).

Manager for Communication and Customer Service at the National Works Agency (NWA), Stephen Shaw, said resurfacing work that is taking place on a section of the roadway that was already paved, is in keeping with the contractor’s obligation to fix defects as part of any construction.

Motorists and other road users have been commenting on the fact that a section of the east-bound lane between Tom Cringle Drive and the Ferry police station has been dug up. The affected section of the roadway was about 1.2 x 400 metres when Loop News observed men working on the section of the roadway on Tuesday night.  Workers on site said cracks had developed in the roadway, and it had begun to sink in some areas.

When contacted on Wednesday, Shaw downplayed the significance of the repairs.

“The repairs are being done to correct defects in the roadway,” he said.

He explained that the defects may not even have been visible to the commuting public, and stressed that the correction of defects is a part of any contract.

“It is written into the contract, and any defect must be repaired before the project is handed over,” said Shaw.

With the work said to be some 90 per cent completed, he said the ongoing repairs will not extend the deadline, and will not impact the overall quality of the work.

The Mandela Highway Realignment and Reconstruction project involves road construction works comprising extensive soft soil treatment; construction of a 3.5-kilometre, six-lane corridor with a two-lane overpass bridge; major bridge works over the Fresh River; a two-lane service road adjacent to the main roadway to facilitate the development of Caymanas Estate; and upgrading of the Six Miles Interchange.

The project falls under the Major Infrastructure Development Programme (MIDP) and is being executed by CHEC, which has previously missed an August 2018 deadline for completion. The new deadline date was listed as the first quarter of 2019.

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