Work on Long Island’s potable water pipeline extension to begin in two weeks
Work on Long Island’s potable water pipeline extension is expected to begin in two weeks, Water and Sewerage Corporation (WSC) Chairman and Long Island Member of Parliament Adrian Gibson told The Nassau Guardian yesterday.
According to Gibson, BHM Company Limited has spent the time since the contract was signed with WSC sourcing material and strategizing on the build. He said BMH is mobilizing a barge filled with equipment which will soon be on its way to Long Island.
When the project is done, 300 homes and businesses on Long Island will have reliable water connected to the Water and Sewerage Corporation. The contract is a $5.3 million deal with a local company.
The new pipeline will run from the northern end of Salt Pond to Boat Harbour Drive in Gray’s Settlement, and in South Long Island from Turtle Cove in Stevens Settlement to the southern end of Clarence Town. This is the second phase of a project to provide Long Island with potable water.
According to Gibson, on Long Island – an island of 3,000 people – more than 75 to 80 percent are without a reliable water supply.
The project is being funded through a Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) water supply improvement project loan of $28.33 million, which has $13.3 million in counterpart funding from the government of The Bahamas.
Gibson said the lack of reliable water and an airport in urgent need of an upgrade are “cancers” for Long Island.
He added that the government has promised a new airport for Long Island, adding that lots of planning has to happen before construction of the new airport can begin.
“All airports have to be designed in accordance with FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) safety standards,” he said.
“All the airports have to be designed by consultant engineers and then financed. The design phase alone is one year and then it has to be priced and tendered. There will be some time before the construction starts.”
Gibson lamented that the island’s current airport has hindered Long Island’s growth. He insisted that a new airport will change Long Island’s economic fate, promote foreign investment on the island and encourage Long Islanders to return home.
“I have confidence and I know that we will deliver for the people of Long Island,’’ Gibson said.
He noted that government is still attempting to compose a plan to get water to the farthest points of Long Island. He said documents are being prepared for that process.
He said similar documents are being prepared for Cat Island, Crooked island and Eleuthera.