The Government of Barbados, in partnership with the private sector, has committed to undertaking a new $30 million road repair project to address the public’s concerns over the island’s roads.
Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley announced the Mill and Pave Road Repair Programme in her address to the nation last Saturday.
“This programme will address the state of the island’s entire road network with the challenge that the number of potholes has compromised the road quality. The pothole problem must stop being a problem for us in the same way that we must also focus on the paving of village and tenantry roads where people live and not just the highways and byways,” Mottley explained.
“The new Mill and Pave programme, which will be outsourced to the private sector, will be worth approximately BDS $30 million and will cover about 45 kilometres. It will be undertaken between now and the end of this financial year on March 31st.”
The Prime Minister said this 45km of road was “separate and apart from an extensive pothole repair programme which will be undertaken as a matter of priority to cover those potholes that are clearly not part of the 45 kilometres scope”.
Mottley blamed the climate crisis and the subsequent bad weather for the slow turnaround when it came to repairing roads and insisted there must be a shift in how repair work is done to navigate the increasingly unpredictable weather.
“Our reality in this climate crisis is that we must work twice as hard in the dry season to compensate for the time we will lose in the rainy season,” Mottley explained.
“In the first six months of last year, our rainfall was half what it was for the 30-year average and in the last few months of last year, you could not find three days straight that did not have serious rain affecting the capacity to do outdoor work.”
Against that backdrop the Prime Minister has assured the public that the new road construction programme will be designed to be climate-resilient with Deputy Prime Minister Santia Bradshaw set to give updates closer to the deadline. (JC)
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