TCI News

TCI: Airports projects were grounded in 2018/19; TCIAA plans for take-off this year

#Providenciales, April 25, 2019 – Turks and Caicos – Nineteen months following the hurricanes of 2017 and the reconstruction work at the JAGS McCartney International Airport remains incomplete, however there is a promise that it will get done this fiscal year.

The airport in Grand Turk was badly bruised in Hurricanes Irma and Maria of September 2017.  Magnetic Media is informed that arrivals passengers are still unable to be accommodated within the terminal building.  Instead, passengers arriving to Grand Turk are exiting the runway via a side gate. The departure lounge, security check-point, the restaurant and the area at the entrance of the departure lounge are the only operational public spaces of the JAGS McCartney International Airport.  Check-in for flights has been moved to this section of the terminal building.

Mr. John Smith, CEO of the Turks and Caicos Islands Airports Authority, TCIAA explained: “The rehabilitation of the Grand Turk terminal building is in progress as well and that is scheduled to be completed within a month or two.  We had a slight setback on that with the shipping of materials.”

The TCIAA was among the statutory bodies and departments appearing at the Appropriations Committee Meeting held in Grand Turk on Tuesday April 23, 2019.

“What we are looking at is a series of capital projects…” said John Smith, CEO of the TCIAA who also updated on other roll-over work. “… but that (South Caicos) is being carried forward because we were unable to get that one moving, however there is traction on that one and we should have that moving very shortly.  The resurfacing of the Salt Cay aerodrome that is moving forward from the previous financial year’s budget and we have the completion of the repair element of the Grand Turk fence, the other capital element that is being carried forward.” 

Another contentious ‘fix’ for the TCIAA is the fire crew work space in Grand Turk.  Mr. Smith told the Committee on Tuesday that work for the fire hall and acquisition of a new fire trucks will support the fire crew, including with equipment at the JAGS McCartney International. 

South Caicos Airport will get a new fence, and Appropriations Committee member from South Caicos, Hon Ruth Blackman was informed that the delay was linked to no company bidding for the job.

Governor’s Appointed member, Hon Temard Butterfield queried expected completion dates for the millions of dollars in capital works assigned to the   

“The Grand Turk terminal rehabilitation that is work in progress.  The Grand Turk fire hall, is gone to tender, it has gone through the procurement process we are in the process now of trying to get the contract ready for commencement.  South Caicos tower repairs has gone through the tender process already so we are able to move that.  Same for the six by six fire truck; that has gone through the tender process and we are ready to move.  The Salt Cay aerodrome is in a similar position; it has gone through the tender process and a preferred bidder has been identified and, we are going to move with that as well.” 

The TCIAA is expected to complete over $13 million in capital projects for the new fiscal year, which ends in March 2020.

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