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DIPT On Course to Undertake Major Infrastructural Projects

By VOICE Reporter
Repair works along Gros Islet highway
Repair works along Gros Islet highway

With an allocation of $484.9 million from the 2024/25 Budget to the Government’s Investment Portfolio, $299.3 million is earmarked for capital projects.

These infrastructural works are aimed at bolstering public infrastructure such as roads, bridges, public buildings, schools, police stations and hospitals.

In his budget presentation, Prime Minister Philip J Pierre stressed on the crucial need to enhance both digital and physical infrastructure ‘to bolster productivity and uplift the lives of citizens’ in the country.

Meanwhile, Infrastructure Minister Stephenson King disclosed that groundwork has already commenced in various communities as part of the Ministry of Infrastructure’s “Year of Infrastructure” initiative, aimed at upgrading and renovating public structures across the island.

Speaking to the media recently, the minister highlighted several forthcoming developments and revealed that major roadworks is due to be undertaken in the northern district communities, with particular focus on secondary roads.

This initiative is strategically aligned with the impending reconstruction of the Castries-Gros Islet Highway, slated to commence shortly.

“The rehabilitation of secondary roads will not only enhance comfort for motorists but also serve as alternative routes during the major works on the Castries-Gros Islet Highway,” stated Minister King.

The minister noted that the ongoing works include the rehabilitation of Cul De Sac road, while stressing its importance in connecting the West and East regions.

He also provided updates on projects such as the West Coast road, Vieux Fort South, and Castries Central, the latter being completed under the Constituency Development Programme (CDP) Programme.

King assured that the Millennium Highway, Cul De Sac road, and the new roundabout are due to be completed by this June. He is optimistic about meeting the timeline, depending upon favourable weather conditions facilitating steady progress.

The minister explained that , “the culmination of the Cul De Sac roadwork will grant access to the bridge funded by the Japanese government, promising to bolster economic activity in the region significantly.”

Minister King also disclosed there are ongoing negotiations for the La Clery Business and Commercial Center, slated to commence construction by May or June this year.

“This project, once completed, is poised to offer unparalleled opportunities and facilities for the residents of La Clery and beyond,” the Castries North MP declared.

With government gearing up for an intensive period of infrastructure development, Minister King reiterated the administration’s commitment to fostering economic growth and prosperity through strategic investments in infrastructure.

In his presentation to the Estimates of Revenue and Expenditure 2024/25, last month (March 27) Minister King contended that notwithstanding the challenges posed by weather elements and the large volume of vehicles traversing the northern-bound highway, the government has undertaken some commendable work projects.

He listed the works completed in Zone 1, as the reconstruction of the Pigeon Island causeway road, the Gros Islet- Cap Estate road, the Jerome Montoute Drive and sections of the Beausejour road.

In Zone 5 A, works has been undertaken in southern communities of Aux Picong and its vicinity, Belle Vue and Campeche.

In Zone 7, road works were completed at Marigot, Anse La Raye, and in the Castries East constituency. Within the Castries East region, repairs were done to the Marchand road and other road surfaces at different locations in the community.

Currently, King added, ongoing road works are being undertaken on the Austin Hill – Dennery North highroad.

In the northern region, work has been done at Vigie and Cas En Bas. “For 30 years, the Cas En Bas road was not catered to and this government has done the Cas En Bas road,” the minister said.

Also, in the north, works were completed on the Riviere Mitant Bridge and road network.

King said works in the southern district included rehabilitation of the St Jude Highway and other road work projects to be done in other areas in the community.

In the thrust to implement the government’s proposed Infrastructure 2030 agenda, the minister said there is need for the reviewing and strengthening of policies and updating legislation. Therefore, he added, this procedure is paving the way for Infrastructure 2030.

Subsequently, said King, during this fiscal year the Department of Infrastructure, Ports and Transport (DIPT) will undertake extensive rehabilitation of roads and bridges.

“The completion of the Millennium Highway and West Coast Road reconstruction, as well as the rehabilitation of the Sir Julian R Hunte highway and the reconstruction of the Choc Bridge will be major improvements in our road infrastructure, which will also contribute to smoother connectivity,” the minister asserted.

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