Physical work at the international airport at Argyle will be completed “by this time next year,” Prime Minister Dr. Ralph Gonsalves told Parliament on Thursday.
“I want to say that I have been advised that by this time next year, the physical work should all be completed,” he said.
He noted that August 13 was five years since construction of the EC$652 million airport began.
“Sometimes when you hear some people who are opposed to the airport, you think we are at it for 12 years, you know. We actually just started it just five years ago. I just want people to remember that,” he said.
Gonsalves said that the external and internal walling of the terminal building are complete but there are on-going works in several other areas, which should be completed by October.
The contract has been entered in with Aeronav of Canada for the construction and retrofitting of the control tower, including navigational aids.
The commencement date for construction is October and will take between seven and eight months, he further told lawmakers.
Earthworks to the access roads and parking have commenced and are progressing “not as fast as I would like,” the Prime Minster said.
“There has been some rainy condition, which have resulted in the abandonment of certain excavation works.”
He said it is expected that this work would be completed by the end of this year.
The landscaping contract documents have been updated and forwarded to the proposed contractor for review, following which it will be signed.
That has gone through its tendering process, he further said.
The crushing plant has been installed and commissioned since December 2012 and to date, and 77,874 cubic metres of crushed material has been stockpiled.
All equipment under the quarrying and base-laying contract has arrived and has been commissioned. Also, all spare parts have been received and final payment has been made.
Gonsalves further told Parliament that base material has been placed on the southern end of the runway, just below the finishing level of the base.
In relation to airfield lighting, the full contract has been received and taken into stock.
Everything has been finalised and the order has been placed for the asphalt plant and equipment. Delivery is estimated at the end of September.
The concrete batching plant and equipment have been finalised and the delivery is estimated for the end of September also, Gonsalves said.
“I want to apologise to resident nearby in Stubbs because of a lot of work that has been done at the entry point,” he further said, adding that a lot of dust is generated from earthworks being done there.
“I am advised that efforts are being made to minimise the extent of the dust,” the Prime Minister said.