Patch work for water damaged roads to continue throughout rainy period
Public Infrastructure Minister, David Patterson, says patch-works on flood-damaged roads across the low-coastal plain are to continue for the duration of the current period of rains, after which permanent repair work will be carried out.
Heavy showers coupled with flood waters damaged sections of several roads in and around the capital city since Guyana started experiencing exceptionally heavy rainfall last month. Gaping pot-holes have emerged in roads which have spent significant periods of time either submerged under flood-water or battered by showers.
On several occasions, submerged holes have done damage to the undercarriage of the vehicles of unsuspecting motorists.
Some of these roads are major thoroughfares. They include South Road, between Camp and Alexander Streets, Norton Street, between Louisa Rowe and Bishop Street, as well as sections of New Market Street and Quamina Street. Damaged portions of road on South Road and Norton Street however, have received temporary fixes to allow for smoother traffic flow during the ongoing rainy period.
“It would be fool-hardy to attempt to repair these roads until we run into a more prolonged dry-season,” Patterson told members of the press on Wednesday, adding that “we will be continuing the work to ensure that traffic moves without any (challenges).”
Patterson said that such works are “ongoing up to today,” and explained that the ministry intends to “put together a systematic plan to fix (the damaged roads) on a more permanent level” once the current rainy period ends.
Patterson also announced that his ministry has asked the Ministry of Finance for funds to carry out extensive rehabilitative works on roads across the country. He noted as well that the ministry has proposed to perform substantial rehabilitative work on a road which has not been rehabilitated in one to two decades.
Asked which roads the ministry has earmarked for rehabilitative works, Patterson said this will depend on how the Finance Ministry responds to his proposals. He opted not to release the names of any of the roads targeted since it is possible that his ministry may not be granted the requisite funds to rehabilitate all of the proposed roads.
Patterson said he is not keen on getting the hopes of the people up only to leave them disappointed.
“The ministry is looking to commence works on a road that has never been done before…I have told my team is that while we are going to repair and rehabilitate the roads we must also, in this budget, do a road that has never been done in 10, 15 or twenty years,” Patterson shared.
“As long as it is approved, some residents in some areas that thought that there was no possibility of them ever having a good road will be having a good road,” explained the minister.