HONOURABLE KYE M. RYMER
ACTING PREMIER AND MINISTER OF FINANCE
CONTRACT SIGNING AND GROUNDBREAKING CEREMONY
FOR THE JOINT MARINE SHORE BASE BUILDING
MARINE SHORE BASE, ROAD REEF, TORTOLA V.I.
JANUARY 19TH 2023
It gives me great pleasure this morning to witness and be a part of this Contract signing and Groundbreaking ceremony for the Joint Marine Shore Base Building. We can all agree that this project is another one that is well overdue.
Like much of our other physical infrastructure, the Marine Shore Base Building sustained significant damage during the 2017 hurricanes, as mentioned by the Governor and we are all aware, and today the building has minimum usage.
The Government has been working hard, we have been working very hard and along with our partners such as the Recovery and Development Agency, to rebuild our infrastructure.
We have taken the decision to be prudent and responsible as we go about this exercise, balancing the interest and concerns of the Virgin Islands people throughout. We have made good progress; quite a number of projects have been completed. Several others are in progress and are at different stages, whether it is in the design or physical work.
It is essential for me to stress the importance of this Joint Marine Shore Base Building. This building operation serves to prevent illegal immigration, illegal narcotics smuggling, and illegal importation. This makes the base critical to the security of the Virgin Islands and Immigration Management while ensuring economic prosperity and national sovereignty are upheld.
The Government of the Virgin Islands places the security of the Virgin Islands, on land and within Our territorial waters as one of our top priorities. The Government of the Virgin Islands has always supported law enforcement agencies. We have always made funds available and other resources for law enforcement and we remain firmly committed to fulfilling our role in supporting law enforcement and national security.
This project will see the construction of a new building infrastructure and boat storage platform.
At this time, I will like to extend congratulations to the winning contractor, Mr. James Todman of James Todman Construction. Mr. James Todman has been in this industry, for over thirty-five years, and celebrated this last year. That is nearly my age, he has been there for quite some time. The winning bid was Two Million Three Hundred and Eighty Thousand, Five Hundred and Ninety Dollars and Eighty-Seven cents ($2,380,590.87).
We, the Government, know that Mr. Todman will complete this project on time and within budget. I will take another opportunity to commend our local contractors, who have been working on our recovery and development projects. Projects which are very expansive in scope, and budget. Our local contractors have been demonstrating with confidence their capabilities, competence, and capacity for doing good work, quality work and deliver projects within budget and deadlines.
This is proof of our abilities as Virgin Islanders, we must block out the noise and have confidence in ourselves, to do and to achieve anything we set our minds on.
It is anticipated that works on this project will commence on 6th February, this year and conclude on 6th February 2024, giving the project one year to be completed.
The scope of works includes demolition of the existing building, with the exception of the cisterns, the construction of a new two-story reinforced concrete structure (5,656 sq. ft. gross), and auxiliary works such as sewer treatment system, boat rack platform, and civil works.
I wish to express thanks to the Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Office (FCDO) for their financial contributions towards this project. It must be emphasized that this is a collaborative effort between FCDO and the Government of the Virgin Islands.
The success of this project will enforce the mission statement of the three entities that will utilize the building upon completion (Royal Virgin Islands Police Force, His Majesty Customs, and the Department of Immigration).
The mission is to ensure the security of our borders and territorial space.
So on behalf of the Government of the Virgin Islands, I express gratitude to the CEO of the Recovery Development Agency (RDA), Mr. Anthony McMaster, and his team for their continued dedication in seeing these critical infrastructure projects through to fruition.
The RDA under the leadership of Mr. McMaster, has not let us down, not even once and Mr. McMaster and his team continue to enjoy the fullest confidence of the Government and our utmost respect.
The Government of the Virgin Islands and I look forward to the opening of the Joint Marine Shore Building upon its completion.
I thank you, and may God continue to bless these beautiful Virgin Islands.