Hadsphaltic being restructured

TOPHadsphalticrestructuredLEAD

Hadsphaltic
International Ltd., one of Cayman’s long-standing major construction companies,
is undergoing a restructuring process that has temporarily closed its offices
and shut down its building projects.

Turks
and Caicos-based group CEO Allan Forrest said Monday the situation was only
temporary.

“The
status is we have been undergoing some minor restructuring in the company,” he
said. “By the end of this week it should all be sorted out and we’ll be back on
track.”

Mr.
Forrest said there would be some new ownership of the company.

“Part
of the restructuring includes taking in new investment,” he said.

Hadsphaltic
is a subsidiary of Johnston International Ltd. 
The company is now based in Turks and Caicos, but also has operations in
the Cayman Islands, the Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Trinidad and Tobago and
other Caribbean Islands. The company first arrived in Cayman in 1966 when it
won a contract to extend and improve the runway facilities at Owen Roberts
International Airport. Its major projects over the years include the Holiday
Inn Hotel, the Hyatt Regency Hotel, the Hyatt Beach Suites, the Westin Hotel,
the Port Authority Building, the Cayman National Bank Building, Prospect
Primary School and many others.

Hadsphaltic
only has one major project going on in Cayman, the new airplane hangar facility
for the Mosquito Research and Control Unit. William Petrie, unit director, was
unaware Monday morning that Hadsphaltic had any issues. He confirmed that the
job stoppage was not a result of anything the MRCU had done or neglected to do.

“We’re
fully paid up with Hadsphaltic and anybody else involved with [the hangar
facility project].”

Mr.
Petrie said the project, thus far, had progressed very smoothly, and was about
half-way completed.

“Hadsphaltic
is a good bit ahead of schedule,” he said.

The
hanger facility will replace the old MRCU hanger, which was condemned after
Hurricane Ivan in September 2004. It will consist of a hurricane-resistant
hanger for the Unit’s two airplanes, as well as a workshop, offices and a
separate pesticide storage building.

“The
design is excellent and it’s a strong building,” Mr. Petrie said. “The only
problem is it’s only half a building.”

Mr.
Petrie, who had been off island last week, said he had been contacted by the
Public Works Department Monday morning and told the contractor had suspended
work on the hangar project Friday and Saturday “because of the weather”.  He was told they would be returning to work
on Tuesday. Mr. Petrie said he found it odd that the contractor wouldn’t return
to work until Tuesday, rather than Monday, if work had been suspended because
of bad weather last week. Work, however, did not resume Tuesday as expected, and
the gates to the job site remained locked.

Later
Tuesday morning, Mr. Petrie said he was again contacted by Public Works.

“They
told me, without any panic or concern, that work had been stopped and that
Hadsphaltic had some kind of issue,” he said. “But they assured me work would
recommence the early part of this week.”

Mr.
Petrie said he hoped to learn more about the situation when he met with
Hadsphaltic representatives on Wednesday in a previously scheduled monthly
progress meeting. He said no one had contacted him to say the meeting had been
cancelled.

Calls
made to Hadsphaltic’s offices at the Marquis Place on Monday went straight to
the automated answering service and no one answered any of the extensions. The
doors were locked and the lights were off inside the office on Monday afternoon
and there was no sign on the door indicating why the office was closed. On Tuesday
morning, the company’s office doors remained locked and most of the lights
inside were off; however there was at least one person sitting at a desk
inside.

TOPHadsphalticrestructuredSTORY

The gates to the Mosquito Research and Control Unit hanger facility project remained locked on Tuesday as work on the project stopped because of issues with the general contractor, Hadsphaltic International Ltd.
Photo: Alan Markoff

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