On the heels of a protest on Monday by taxi drivers and residents along the Manzanilla Mayaro Road, the Ministry of Works and Transport (MOWT) said it understands and acknowledges their concerns.
However, the ministry advised that protests will only serve to delay the project.
The taxi drivers and residents were highlighting concerns about the removal of equipment at the project site and condition of the road, but the ministry denied that works on the Manzanilla Mayaro Road have been stood down.
In a statement, the Ministry said several contractors have expressed concerns about the safety and security of extremely expensive resources.
“As such, removing equipment is purely based on security concerns and measures, not demobilisation,” the Ministry explained.
Works to ensure a permanent fix on the roadway began on July 28th and thus far, three of the five packages under Phase One of the project have been awarded.
Maintenance of the roadway, clearing and grubbing of the area and stockpiling of material is currently underway.
In the upcoming weeks, continued maintenance of the road, preliminary works for the construction of a culvert crossing, excavation works to failed areas along the roadway and stockpiling of additional material will be executed.
The Ministry advised that the extensive project scope considered the exigencies, uniqueness and environmental challenges associated with the site.
These include the reconstruction of the collapsed road spanning approximately 1.6km within the 5km segment of roadway along the Manzanilla-Mayaro Road, with rehabilitation and upgrading of the existing 6m wide asphalt roadway.
Additionally, raising of the existing roadway over the 5km segment by approximately 450mm.
There will also be the installation of eight culverts at strategic locations along the road, repairs to the existing culvert crossings and the installation of flap gates at the seaward end of each of the eight culverts to prevent the backflow of water from the sea during a storm surge event.
The Ministry said it understands and acknowledges the concerns of the residents but advised that protests will only serve to delay the implementation of the critical project.
“We remain open to dialogue with concerned residents in the community and will continue to focus our efforts on expediting this project to provide long-term relief to the commuting public,” the Ministry said.