The Ministry of Transport and Works will today host an official project launching and ground breaking ceremony for the construction of four bridges that were damaged or destroyed during the passage of the trough system last December.
The ceremony takes place at Hope Bridge in Penniston at 3 p.m. and will hear addresses from officials in the Ministry of Works, and a representative from the Ecuadorian Army Corp of Engineers.
Prime Minister and Minister of Works Ralph Gonsalves will deliver the keynote address.
The project includes the reconstruction of the Hope Bridge and the construction of three Bailey Bridges in the villages of Sharpes, Kakarta, and Plan in Chateaubelair.
The bridges are being constructed through a humanitarian gift from Ecuador. The works will be carried out by the Ecuadorian Army Corp of Engineers and civilians with the support of Vincentian. Supervision of the project will be done by the Office of the Chief Engineer.
The project is classified under the Government of St. Vincent and the Grenadines’ Disaster Rehabilitation Works Programme and The overall implementation timeline for the four bridges is estimated at eight months.
The Ministry of Works, has advised that Hope Bridge will be closed to vehicular traffic to facilitate this afternoon’s event.
However, the Hope Bridge bypass will remain open to vehicular traffic.
Forty-five Ecuadorian military personnel have arrived in St. Vincent and the Grenadines to assist with the reconstruction of four bridges.
Ecuador’s decision to assist this country with its bridge reconstruction project was part of the outcome of the first round of talks between both countries on May 30 at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Kingstown, that was geared towards the enhancement of the relationship between both countries.
Following the visit of an official delegation to Quito, Ecuador in July led by Gonsalves, the President of Ecuador, Rafael Correa dispatched a team of engineers to assess the work to be done on the bridges.