Jamaica | Feb 25, 2023

J$29.3 billion earmarked for South Coast Highway, MoBay Perimeter Road project continuation

/ Our Today

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Aerial view of the first applied layer of asphalt on the left-hand side of the Southern Coast Highway Improvement Project (SCHIP) at Grants Pen, St Thomas as at March 16, 2022. (Photo: Twitter @CHECJamaica)

The Government of Jamaica has set aside J$29.3 billion for the Southern Coastal Highway Improvement Project and the Montego Bay Perimeter Road in St. James during the upcoming 2023/2024 fiscal year.

For the Southern Coastal Highway Improvement Project, the government has allotted J$22.1 billion to continue work in the upcoming fiscal year. The objective of the project is to improve the alignment and capacity of the existing southern coastal main arterial road in order to make it safe and efficient, free from flooding and be the catalyst for future development.

Up to December 2022, the project has seen several achievements. These included the completion of the design for May Pen to Williamsfield (Part A, road section). In addition, where Part A work is concerned, construction is 80 per cent complete; land acquisition, 90 per cent complete; and utilities relocation, is also 90 per cent complete.

Scope of work being completed

Under Part B road section, construction of Harbour View to Albion to Yallahs Bridge is 80 per cent complete; Yallahs Bridge to Port Antonio is also 80 per cent complete and Morant Bay to Cedar Valley is 80 per cent complete. For Part B works, 15 construction packages were awarded, which have achieved 37 per cent completion overall.

The anticipated physical targets for fiscal year 2023/2024 include the completion and approval of designs under Part A works, as well as 100 per cent completion of construction works, access to 100 per cent of necessary parcels along the alignment and the completion of utilities. For part B works, 100 per cent completion is being targeted for construction packages under sections I, II, and IV.

For section III, the award and achievement of 30 per cent of construction packages is targeted. The project is being implemented by the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, with co-funding from the Government of Jamaica and China EXIM Bank.

It began in January 2017 and is slated to end in March 2025. Some J$5.2 billion has been estimated for fiscal year 2024/2025, if necessary.

Montego Bay Perimeter Road

Work is to continue on the Montego Bay Perimeter Road in St James from an allocation of J$7.2 billion in the upcoming fiscal year. The project aims to create a safe and reliable alternative route for motorists, who are intent on travelling across and within Montego Bay, which should result in less congestion within the second city and the opening up of new lands to facilitate structured developments.

Prime Minister Andrew Holness (sixth from left), is joined by other government ministers and representatives from China Harbour Engineering Company (CHEC) in the ground breaking for the US$274.5 million Montego Bay Perimeter Road project at Ironshore in St James on July 16, 2023. (Photo: JIS)

Physical achievements up to December 2022 included 42 per cent completion of land acquisition, completion of preliminary geotechnical investigation, completion of preliminary designs, completion of the Montego Bay Bypass outline designs and the planting of five hectares of trees.

For fiscal year 2023/2024, anticipated physical targets include acquiring the required parcels of land required to construct the new road, completing 15 per cent of construction works, and completing detailed designs for the new roads.

The project began in April 2019 and is to run until March 2028. It is being implemented by the National Road Operating and Constructing Company (NROCC) with funding from the Government of Jamaica.

For fiscal year 2024/2025, J$12.6 billion has been allocated, if necessary.


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