During a District Meeting held on 21 February Hon. Julian Fraser once again chided the manner in which road works are carried out in the Territory and complained that despite how much is spent the roads do not remain intact for long: “The roads were never designed properly and they were never built properly. They are non-functional, dry weather roads. Even in the dry weather you get potholes.”
He also criticized the fact that utility companies usually dig up the roads to facilitate their company repairs and improvements. “They allow Cable and Wireless and BVI Electricity to bury their cable three feet below the surface,” Hon. Fraser added
FLUSHED DOWN THE TOILET
During a December sitting of the House of Assembly Hon. Fraser told Government that the manner in which the roadworks are being done is tantamount to money being flushed down the toilet. The point was made by Third District Representative, Hon. Julian Fraser as he noted that the $65M loan Government intends to take includes road rehabilitation projects.
In this regard Hon. Fraser criticized the manner in which previous loan funded road repairs fund were done. In fact, Hon. Fraser noted that the projects rarely live up to standard and that maintaining the Territory’s road is a constant challenge.
The Opposition Member told the House that there should be full disclosure about how Government intends to move forward with these projects. “What are we going do with this money when we talk about rehabilitation of roads are we going to rebuild the roads the way they are or were? That’s throwing money down the drain literally. That’s what we did the last time. The money went down the drain Madame Speaker.”
“If we go and take money and build the roads as they are right now or as they were before the storm you are literally throwing money down the drain. We need to see a plan as to what the reconstruction is going to look like and we need to approve that plan.”
In providing examples of the shortcomings of previous road rehabilitation projects Hon. Fraser said: “You cannot continue to build roads with two feet diameter culverts or less crossing the street. They get blocked before the rain comes and nobody realizes it because by the time they open their doors and get outside the flooding has subsided. So they do not realize that the roads were flooded.”
“We cannot continue to build roads Madame Speaker with water settling on the roads — brand new roads the water is settling. We need to get the proper equipment to give the roads the proper settle so the water can drain and we cannot continue to do business this way. We have to do these projects we have to do them properly. We cannot be taking money and flushing it down the toilet like this: so we cannot build roads like that,” the seasoned Legislator added.
Previously the Caribbean Development Bank CDB approved a $15.67 million loan for the Virgin Islands in March 2012, to help with rehabilitating the Territory’s roadways, after the devastation caused by Tropical Storm Otto in October 2010.