Seven European and four Chinese companies as welll as several others in association with Guyanese firms are among 22 companies that Tuesday signaled an interest in the construction of a new Demerara Harbour Bridge.
The companies did not submit bids to construct the new thoroughfare, but instead were required to express interest to conduct a feasibility study and design the bridge. The bids were unsealed by the National Procurement and Tender Administration Board (NPTAB) at its headquarters, Urquhart Street, Georgetown.
Among the bidders is the highly respected Ballast Nedam which has built several robust bridges in neighbouring Suriname and around the world. The Netherlands-based company was at one time selected to build the Berbice River Bridge but a memorandum of understanding was later scrapped around 2007.
Other companies desirous of conducting the feasibility study and design of the new Demerara Harbour Bridge are COWI of Denmark, Politechnica Ingeneria Architecture of Italy in association with Marcelle Gaskin and Associates of Guyana, Howson Consulting Engineers of the United Kingdom, Egis of France, IPRO Consulting from Germany, Mott Mc Donald of the United Kingdom in association with SRK Engineering and Consulting.
The Chinese companies that have also bid are China Railway First Group, China Harbour Engineering (CHEC), Zhejiang Provincial Institute of Communications, Planning, Design and Research, and China Shandong International Economic and Technology Competition Group Limited.
Also bidding out of Asia is the India-based Rites Limited.
Companies from Caribbean Community (Caricom) member states also submitted bids to conduct the feasibility study and design the new Demerara Harbour Bridge. They are VIKAR Enterprises of Trinidad and Tobago, CTE in association with NV Rustwijk and Rustwijk of Suriname, WSP Caribbean Limited from Trinidad and the Guyana-based Stunning Nisi Inc. NMN Group of Canada in association with CEMCO of Guyana also hopes to be selected.
Other companies whose bids were opened were Sener of South Africa, Japan-based Stantec in association with Pedelta, Proficenter from Brazil, Stuart Consulting Group along with Rahmad and Associates from the United States, CBCL Ltd from Nova Scotia, Canada.
The 1.25 mile long Demerara Harbour Bridge- the main link between East and West Demerara for people and cargo- was opened in July 1978 and was expected to last only 10 years, but its life-span has been expanded.