It must be kind of unsettling to Dr. Michael Darville that the Fishing Hole Road Bridge is now earmarked to finish towards the latter part of the year. It was anticipated that the bridge would be one of the completed projects primed for a rollout by the Government of The Bahamas prior to the 2017 general elections.
That will not happen. Hurricane Matthew materialized and put everything on hold. The devastation left caused further delays to projects such as the Fishing Hole Bridge and now Dr. Darville is speaking about August as the completion month.
The view here is that some government, whether the incumbent one or a new group, will cut the ribbon to officially open the bridge shortly before the Christmas Season. One has to account for the intangibles with projects such as the Fishing Hole Bridge and given also the challenges faced by the Bahamas Treasury, installment payments to the contractors could be late again.
We can say though, that once the disappointment sunk in regarding the opening time frame, Dr. Darville quickly focused on an outlook that should have been a priority view in any event.
“That (completion) would be a great day for the Island of Grand Bahama. I cannot wait to drive over it. We are comfortable that we (will) have a structure that can sustain a category five hurricane and can last the residents of Grand Bahama for many, many years to come, and finally solve the problem, as it relates to flooding and the vexing issues associated with flooding that separates West Grand Bahama from the City of Freeport.”
That’s what’s really important.
Therefore, it is appropriate to congratulate the Government of The Bahamas for an undertaking long in coming. Through a long series of different central administrations, going back to the PLP Governments led by Sir Lynden Pindling and indeed before that to the United Bahamian Party days in leadership of the country, the Fishing Hole area caused trauma and death during hurricanes and abnormal high tidal flows.
Natural disaster conditions at the area have on many occasions cut the connection between West Grand Bahama and Freeport. Successive governments through the years promised to effectively address the matter.
Only now, the present government, that of Perry Gladstone, with Dr. Darville pushing hard from his forum at the Ministry For Grand Bahama, is making good on the promise.
It is a noble objective.
The Fishing Hole Bridge is just what the doctor ordered for the people of West Grand Bahama.
Published Wednesday, March 8, 2017