A satellite warehouse, housing essential disaster equipment was opened at Chilli Village, Georgetown, yesterday.
The warehouse is the third of six being constructed in strategic locations in the country, to strengthen resilience in areas that are most vulnerable during natural disasters.
The other satellite warehouse locations are Sandy Bay, Rose Hall, Mesopotamia, Bequia and Union Island. The warehouses at Sandy Bay and Rose Hall have already been opened.
The Georgetown warehouse was designed by the architects and engineers of the Ministry of Transport and Works with input from original designs by the local firm, TVA Consultant Ltd. These designs were reviewed and amended by another local firm, Stewart Engineering Ltd., which also supervised the construction.
The works, which commenced on May 3, 2018 at the contracted cost of XCD1.04 million, was completed on May 31, 2019 by Williams Electronics Services.
The building, which has been built to resist hurricanes and other disasters, has a main storage area of approximately 570 square feet, an office, a full bathroom and water storage of approximately 1,300 gallons.
The construction of the satellite warehouses is part of the Regional Disaster Vulnerability Reduction Project (RDVRP).
This project was declared effective by the World Bank on October 18, 2011 and is funded through a mixture of grants and soft loans from the World Bank, the Strategic Climate Fund’s Pilot Programme for Climate Resilience, and the European Development Fund.
The RDVRP’s total funding is EC$183.4 million and currently represents the government’s main response to the changing climate and the increasing natural disasters that have been impacting small island developing states like ours.
The RDVRP is being implemented by the Economic Planning and Sustainable Development Division of the Ministry of Finance, Economic Planning, Sustainable Development and Information Technology.
Activities under the RDVRP include the rehabilitation of emergency shelters, rehabilitation of roads, bridges, river crossings, river embankment protection, coastal protection, jetty rehabilitation, technical designs, training in climate data gathering and resilience planning, and equipment.
Activities in the North Windward area include coastal protection works at Georgetown, rehabilitation of a bridge in Congo Valley, and road rehabilitation at Firebun currently underway. The project has also completed designs for slope stabilization works at Mt. Greenan and Spring as well as the construction of another satellite warehouse at Magum.
Yesterday’s handing over ceremony was addressed by Michelle Forbes, director of the National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) and Richard MacLeish, project manager of the RDVRP, while Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves gave the feature address.