Now is the time for small contractors to form alliances with one another to prepare for whatever jobs may come about with Disney’s development at Lighthouse Point in Eleuthera.
Former Bahamian Contractors Association (BCA) President Leonard Sands said while he is aware of work being carried out on the project by primarily larger companies, it will be at least another year before that work trickles down to the small man.
“The local contractors are on the ground working, doing the infrastructural work. But I think it’s going to be at least another 12 months before the smaller local contractors have that smaller scope of work, because they’re never going to give ten guys from Rock Sound a contract to install $12 million worth of work. It’s not going to happen that way,” Sands told Guardian Business.
“I think it gives the local guy time to forge relationships and when there is an offer for that specialty they can say, ‘Hey I can’t build the whole thing, but I can install all your doors here, or I can install all your flatwork or your landscaping,’ so this is a time for them to really be smart.”
Yesterday, Eleuthera Chamber of Commerce President Thomas Sands said the full economic benefit of the project had yet to be felt on Eleuthera, since the project is still very much in its early stages.
Construction cannot start in earnest until Disney Cruise Line’s environmental impact assessment and environmental management plan have been approved by the government. Until then, local company ENCO International is conducting geotechnical investigations at the site in preparation for construction.
“It is good but you know the challenge is that it will have a lot of big players in it and it is my hope that the big players suck up enough of the local unemployment numbers to be fully impactful to the community,” Sands told Guardian Business yesterday.
“I can tell you there are big local contractors engaged in the project, so that’s not a bad thing. The challenge is I think it’s going to be a couple of months to a year before we see the smaller local contractors on that island fully engaged in real bid opportunities.”