A DELAY in the shipment of electrical components has slowed the $91M floodlight project at the Albion Sports Complex, Corentyne, Berbice.
However, works have picked up a pace since Cummings Electrical Company began phase two (placing of foundation) of the project on January 17.
Following a meeting with stakeholders and a thorough inspection of the facility yesterday, Minister of Youth, Sport and Culture, Dr Frank Anthony expressed satisfaction at the progress which is being made by the contracting firm.
“I think they are making good progress by placing the foundations that will support the six lighting towers, Mr Cummings has assured us that the other works would be quickly completed; beyond that, we want to establish a governance structure to manage the facility in collaboration with GUYSUCO and the Neighbourhood Democratic Council and other stakeholders.
We are setting up this complex to meet the International Cricket Council’s (ICC) standards so, in order to attract international matches, we will come up with a master plan that makes economic sense,” he revealed.
COMMITMENT OF THE PPP/C GOVERNMENT
The Minister noted that the project is another testimony to the commitment of the People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) Government towards the development of sporting facilities. He made reference to Sabina Park in Jamaica that is still without floodlights, even though it hosts international games on an annual basis.
“Now international matches require certain standards and unless facilities are meeting those standards, there will be problems. We are committed as a government to constantly keep investing to ensure that this ground reaches an international standard; this ongoing investment is a substantial commitment,” he declared.
Additional facilities such as drainage, outfield and enhanced seating arrangements will be addressed by the Government after the lighting project is completed.
There will be six towers with seventeen luminaries on each pole, totalling 102 – 1500 watts bulbs which will be powered by Guyana Power and Light (GPL) Inc. during the initial stages of establishment; plans are being made for the acquisition of a generator in the near future.
Manager of the GUYSUCO, Albion Estate, Devendra Kumar noted that the power generated from the Skeldon Estate will be adequate to supply the lighting towers. He also maintained that the project is a good investment on behalf of the Government of Guyana.
“We know that Berbice has produced a lot of top players (cricketers) for the West Indies team; this initiative is a good one, in the sense that cricketing activities will be promoted. We are proud (to know) that this is the first ground in Berbice that will be having floodlights,” he expressed.
THREE PHASES OF THE PROJECT
Managing Director of Innovative Engineering Consultancy Services (I.E.C.S), Deoraj Dalchand, indicated that the project has been divided into three phases – the first phase was the supply of the floodlight equipment, phase two entails: civil works which involved the placing of foundation and erection of towers; while the third phase would entail the installation of imported equipment and powering of the system.
Should the project progress according to the plan of the Engineering Consultant and Engineering Firm, works are expected to be completed by March 15.
Minister Anthony was elated to receive such information and plans to stage an exhibition cricket game at the venue, following the official commissioning of the floodlights.
Among those present during the meeting and inspection were: Permanent Secretary (PS) within the Ministry of Youth, Sport and Culture Alfred King, Vice-Chairman of Region 6 Bhupaul Jhagroo, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Cummings Electrical Michael Cummings and other officials from GUYSUCO.