Although it was opened to motorists and appeared completed, the roadwork was actually incomplete, the Director of Public Works Cromwell Williams told MyVueNews.com. He explained that a disagreement arose between the consultant of the project and contractor Surrey Paving, which led to the work being unfinished.
Motorists were a tad bit surprised to see parts of the new road developing potholes after the recent rainfalls during the Emancipation Day weekend, considering the road was only paved last year. The paving was part of a road project to improve the roadway from Pond Road all the way down to the South East Peninsula and started under the previous administration before last year’s elections.
The work continued when the new administration took office. However, according to Director Williams, due to the dispute between the consultant that acts on behalf of the Public Works Department/Government and the contractor, the work was not completed.
The incompleteness of the work is the reason for the potholes being developed after the rains, Williams explained. “What they have done is put down a first coat of asphalt and another permanent wearing coat is yet to go on, but there has been some…dispute, for want of a better word, between the contractor and the consultant, as to the material that was put down, whether or not it met specifications, and whether or not it will remain, or it will be removed,” he told MyVueNews.com.
Williams could not say exactly when the work to redo the road will begin, but he is mindful of it being done before the start of the new tourism season, which begins in November. “In a very short time, you will see some recommencement of work there. Most likely we will finally instruct them to remove what was put down and to redo that section,” Williams stated, and emphasized, “I cannot say definitively that work will begin before the start of the new tourism season, but there is a good chance it will recommence within a couple for weeks and shouldn’t take long once it’s started.”
Meanwhile, that stretch of road is not the only area of concern in regards to durability. Williams pointed to the F.T. Williams Highway, which has had its share of potholes being developed after heavy rainfall. According to the Public Works Director, the standard for heavy maintenance to be done on new roads, such as pothole patching, begins at about 10 years. The F.T. Williams Highway was opened to the public seven years ago, but within months after it was opened in 2009, it had to be repaired several times for potholes.
“Generally the road should last, I’m told, eight to ten years before you have to do serious maintenance, patching potholes and so on. I think we have some early potholes. I don’t think it is eight years since we took over that road, which means we have some areas that did not live up to requirements, from my observation,” Williams said.