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$60m Couva/Preysal project due for March 2012 finish

Published: 
Friday, December 2, 2011
Photo SHASTRI BOODAN

Work on construction of the $60 million Couva/Preysal interchange project is ahead of schedule. This word comes from Couva-based Super Industrial Services Ltd (SIS), one of two contractors working on the project. SIS is in charge of constructing the western end of the project, while Seereeram Brothers is constructing the eastern side. A spokesman for SIS said the project has a completion date of March 2012. He said the project is moving ahead of schedule and noted that there were no setbacks in relation to manpower, materials and other construction issues. 

The SIS spokesman said the major challenge is to keep traffic runniing smoothly while the project moves ahead. The area is a high volume one for motorists and containerised traffic that goes to and from the port of Pt Lisas. In September, Works and Infrastructure Minister Jack Warner said the interchange will be completed by August 2012. He said the initial completion date set by contractors was June 2012. 

“I believe that Couva Interchange will take 11 to 12 months to be completed.”  He said the Government would have to construct four lanes on Rivulet Road, through which most industrial vehicles pass, because it could not take the traffic flow. Containers—20 feet and 40-feet long—traverse Rivulet Road night and day. A major destination for these containers is the Pt Lisas Industrial Port Development Corporation Ltd (Plipdeco) as Port Point Lisas is the second major port in Trinidad and covers a total area of approximately 19.51 hectares.

According to the Web site, plipdeco.com, T&T is the world’s largest exporter of methanol and ammonia, and also the largest exporter of LNG to the United States. The Point Lisas industrial estate facilitates these trades, and is home to 103 tenants manufacturing products ranging from world-class producers of ammonia, methanol, urea and steel to smaller manufacturers and service industries. These companies employ more than 12,000 persons.

The estate is a major economic drive for T&T and the model has recently received much technical interest from Ghana and Japan.

Port details

Location

Port Point Lisas is located in the Gulf of Paria halfway down the west coast of Trinidad, 32 kilometres south of Port-of-Spain. Its location between North and South America allows easy convenient connections to all major shipping routes.

Gateway to the Americas

Vessels approach Point Lisas via the Savonetta Channel, which is 1.75 nautical miles long, 152 metres wide, with a dredged depth of 12.8 metres. The Turning Basins are 500 metres and 300 metres in diameter, respectively. Both have been dredged to 12.8 metres. With its strategic location, the port is often referred to as the “Gateways to the Americas,” catering for containerised cargo from the United States, Europe, United Kingdom and the Far East. Port Point Lisas is a multi-purpose cargo facility operating on a 24/7 basis. 

With its six commercial berths (Nos 1, 1A, 2, 3, 4 and 5), the port handles a wide range of traffic, including dry and liquid bulks, containers, general cargo and breakbulk servicing both the individual and business sectors alike.  The port also has expertise in handling project cargo, mainly for new plants on the adjacent industrial estate.