Basseterre, St. Kitts, August 27, 2018 – News leaked on the weekend that the piling at the marine construction site of the second cruise ship pier at Port Zante has hit another snag.
According to a reliable source, a large solid bed of rock has been discovered at a more shallow level of the seabed than was expected.
Apparently the plan now is for the rock to be removed by dynamite, a process which could have serious negative impact on the underwater environment, including possible damage to the Port Zante bulkhead.
Meanwhile, there are reports that the dredging has already destroyed all that was left of the surrounding reef and sea grass areas.
“Dynamite is not at hand at the moment and may have to be imported to break up the rock for the piling in that particular area to proceed,” a source said.
“This is likely to cause a further delay in the piling,” said the source who added there is no evidence that the environmental impact assessment (EIA) even mentioned the use of dynamite and observers are asking if the Ministry responsible for the environment is even aware of this major risk now being faced by the project contractors
In June, an excavator plunged into the sea on the western side of the existing cruise ship pier at Port Zante and delayed the project for two weeks.
The operator of the heavy equipment miraculously escaped death or serious injury when the incident occurred. A heavy duty barge was brought in to remove excavator from its watery grave.
This long awaited second cruise pier project is already more than two years behind schedule because of the unnecessary redesigning and excessive overpricing which was carried out by the new Timothy Harris Government.
The original project budget of EC$85 Million was increased to EC$135 million after the Harris Government got hold of the project.