Ministry not pleased with progress of synthetic track

The Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sport said yesterday that it was not pleased with the progress of what will be Guyana’s first synthetic track at Leonora.

This was disclosed by Deputy Permanenet Secretary in the ministry Steve Ninvalle who yesterday told reporters  that the government had sacked contractors working on the athletic synthetic track at Leonora because of poor work.

The foundation of the Northern VIP stand at Leonora
The foundation of the Northern VIP stand at Leonora

According to Ninvalle the facility is in the second phase, approximately 30% away from completion despite all the delays following the inclement weather.

“Works are going on apace at the synthetic track. It may not be at the pace the ministry is actually comfortable with, but nevertheless it is going on,” he said.

“The reason why we have not actually moved the pace as we would have liked is because of many issues pertaining to the services by some contractors and that has allowed the ministry to actually terminate the contract of one, Pioneer.”

Pioneer General Construction was responsible for constructing the inner roads and drains at the facility.

Stabroek Sport on an updated visit to the site was informed that the rubberized turf for the international synthetic track which will be laid by BSW Regupol, a German Company has arrived in Guyana.

Ninvalle told the media that the northern VIP stands are in process of construction and disclosed that the German Company will arrive in Guyana shortly to start Phase 2 Lot 1 of the facility; the laying of the rubberized material.

“They started casting the stands and there is another stand that casting will be done shortly,” he disclosed.

He said that a representative of the German Company visited the facility earlier in the year. However, work on the track was delayed as heavy rainy fall was persistent over the past months.

A correspondence from Guyana’s Hydrometeorological Office, he said, has been sent to the German Company indicating the remaining dry season, which was disclosed as mid September to mid November.

Ninvalle said the sunny weather was a requirement by BSW to lay the Regupol material.

“We have written to the German Company BWS and they should be in Guyana shortly to lay the synthetic material on that track. What they have asked us is to mail or guarantee when the dry season will be in Guyana.  We have written to the Hydrometeorological Office and we have received correspondence stating that a dry season is expected between mid September to mid November. BSW can only lay that material on this track during dry weather and it must be continuous dry weather,” reported Ninvalle.

Patrick Pitt, Senior Project Manager at Design and Construction Services Limited said:“Right now we are reviewing the job of other contractors.”

Pitt also disclosed that maintenance of the grass on the football field which is located in the center of the synthetic track has begun with the outer field to be completed.

“Overall work on the track is around 70% with the most work outstanding the two stands which BK is now doing and we have some outer work and inner work to be done on the field which will be completed shortly since we are having the dry weather,” noted Pitt.

The construction of the stands has been awarded to BK International Inc.  Also completed at the facility are entrance and exit gates and the surrounding fence.

It was also reported that an expenditure of US$5M has been projected to complete the facility which will allow  local stars like Winston George, Stephan James, Cassey George and Alita Moore to compete on a surface which is used for international competitions.

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