The US Virgin Islands Port Authority (USVIPA) has considered travelers from the British Virgin Islands as it moves forward with both its aviation and marine port improvement projects.
St Thomas, USVI is a major transportation hub for the Territory as residents utilize both the Cyril E King (CEK) International Airport and the two ferry ports for their travel needs. This fact is not lost on the management of the USVIPA who mentioned that consideration for the BVI travelers is contemplated by the USVI plans.
It was stated that the Virgin Islands Port Authority documented $87 million in damages after the USVI’s ports, which include over 120 properties struck by the two category five hurricanes that wreaked havoc in September 2017. In an update the USVIPA stated that the reconstruction and renovations of the US Virgin Islands’ airports and seaports are progressing.
The works are being undertaken by USUSVIPA’s contractor, Lemartec, Inc., and it was noted that 70% of the Cyril E. King Airport Terminal has been completed. It was stated that while repairs are ongoing, both airport terminals are being redesigned to accommodate an increase in air traffic to the USVI.
The Virgin Islands Ports Authority stated that it is aiming to provide a first-rate travel experience for its visitors and residents; and mentioned the BVI travelers in its announcement stating: “USVIPA hosted a design charrette on St. Thomas in June to unveil its plans to expand and modernize the CEKA Terminal including: expanded parking and ground transportation facilities; utilizing the second floor of the terminal and adding jet bridges; and a new transportation facility to facilitate travel from the airport to the British Virgin Islands.”
On the marine end the USVIPA announced that it completed construction of a temporary US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) checkpoint at the Urman Fredericks Marine Terminal in Red Hook. Now it was stated that passenger ferries arriving from ports like the BVI can now clear Customs in Red Hook instead of traveling to downtown Charlotte Amalie at the Edward Blyden Terminal.
“This time-saving amenity has improved the travelers’ experience between the USVI and the British Virgin Islands. CBP is also providing Customs services for private pleasure boats at the Victor Sewer Facility (The Creek) in St. John to accommodate the charter industry that has become an integral component of St. John’s economy,” the USVIPA stated.