Thu | Oct 22, 2020

Seawall project to offer benefits to communities

Published:Wednesday | September 30, 2020 | 12:15 AMChristopher Serju/Senior Gleaner Writer
Odaine Perry (centre), a civil engineer, tours the Port Royal Street Coastal Revetment Project along with Omar Sweeney (left), managing director of the Jamaica Social Investment Fund, and Kingston Mayor Delroy Williams on Tuesday. The project is scheduled
Odaine Perry (centre), a civil engineer, tours the Port Royal Street Coastal Revetment Project along with Omar Sweeney (left), managing director of the Jamaica Social Investment Fund, and Kingston Mayor Delroy Williams on Tuesday. The project is scheduled to end in April 2021.

The Port Royal Street Coastal Revetment Project is on track to meet its April 2021 deadline within budget, says Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF) Managing Director Omar Sweeney.

The assurance came during Tuesday’s tour of the works along the section of corridor running behind the Tower Street Adult Correctional Centre, westwards to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade.

The area is an integral part of the east-west transportation network in the Kingston Metropolitan Area, especially for travellers to and from the Norman Manley International Airport.

Sweeney disclosed that the project, which is 23 per cent complete, is geared towards stopping the erosion of the shoreline.

Mayor of Kingston Delroy Williams said that while shoreline protection was the primary purpose, there were multiple benefits for the community.

“We are creating a recreational space, so it will become an attraction space for different experiences, a space for leisure and one that has some form of entertainment value,” Williams said.

Meanwhile, Jamel Banton of Smith Warner International Limited, managing partner with the contractors S&G Road Surfacing Materials Limited, said that boulders weighing between one and three tonnes were used as the primary line of defence against the waves.

“So it is solving the problem of erosion and it’s providing protection against any storm surges whenever there is a hurricane or anything like that that could impact the shoreline, and then the wall and the boardwalk behind it provide that avenue for people to do recreation,” he said.

In addition to the boardwalk, the area will have parking spaces and recreational and bathroom facilities for visitors. Green spaces will also be an integral aspect of the project.

This aspect of the project will be coordinated by the Kingston and St Andrew Municipal Corporation and the Urban Development Corporation, which have plans to develop sustainable linkages with nearby communities such as Rae Town and Southside, which should see residents engaged in income-generation services.

The scope of work includes the installation of one kilometre of composite seawall and armour stone revetment structure, upgrading of drainage, and the rehabilitation and raising of one kilometre of the existing roadway.

Additional works include the construction of a 4.7-metre-wide boardwalk and the creation of an 80-metre fishing beach.

In January, Cabinet approved JSIF’s decision to grant a $950-million contract to S&G Road Surfacing Materials Limited for the project, which is being funded through a World Bank loan.

christopher.serju@gleanerjm.com