Evaluation of bids for new harbour bridge project expected to be completed by month-end

The evaluation of the bids to finance, design, build and maintain the new Demerara Harbour Bridge is expected to be completed by the end of this month, General Manager of the Demerara Harbour Bridge Company (DHBC) Rawlston Adams says.

Speaking at the Ministry of Public Infrastructure’s end-of-year review last Thursday, Adams said the 11 Expressions of Interest (EOIs) received are still in the evaluation stage.

“Once we get out of that stage, we will present our report to the government and will be advised on how to go forward on that project,” Adams said, while noting that the time period for the completion of the evaluation of the EOIs is the end of January.

“The team has been assembled and is a very diverse team…. It’s a lot of financial proposals and you have to have the necessary expertise and advice to go on and go through and compare because you are looking at a large number of proposals. So we are hoping to complete by the end of January,” Adams said.

He noted that the evaluation team consists of an engineer, legal and financial representatives, and personnel from the Ministry of Finance. “The four were identified by the Ministry of Finance but we are free to call on other technical resources as needed,” he explained.

In terms of funding, Public Infrastructure Minister David Patterson noted that provisions for the project were left out of the 2018 national budget since they have not determined what option will be used to finance construction.

“…When the determination is made, we are sure we will approach parliament for supplementary allocations. It is my hope that we won’t have to approach parliament. However, in the event we do, we are assured that will be done,” he said.

The proposed bridge is expected to be approximately 2 kilometers north of the existing floating bridge, spanning Houston on the eastern bank of the Demerara River to Versailles on the western bank of the Demerara River. The project will see the construction of an approximately 1,500m-long fixed bridge with a movable span and two approach roads of a total length of 600m. It is envisaged that the project will commence in 2018 and will be delivered in 2020.

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