Plans for widening a two-lane section of the Esterley Tibbetts Highway through George Town and building a new road through the Barkers area in West Bay were detailed in a release of government documents last week.
The proposals are contained in an as yet unapproved third amendment to the National Roads Authority agreement between Dart Realty [Cayman} Ltd. and the Cayman Islands government. The agreement has, among other things, dictated the terms of the recent closure of a section of West Bay Road and the extension of the Esterley Tibbetts into West Bay.
The widening of the Esterley Tibbetts at its southern end, according to the proposed amendment, will be sectioned off into two parts. The first, between the Butterfield roundabout and Lawrence Boulevard, will be constructed by the National Roads Authority. The second, between Lawrence Boulevard and the Gecko Link roundabout, would be constructed by a contractor hired by Dart Realty.
Although no specific costs are given for widening the road, there are indications within the proposed amendment that it will cost no more than US$11 million.
Also, as part of the proposal, Dart Realty will not provide any funding for the work until both sections of West Bay Road in the Seven Mile Beach area of Grand Cayman have been closed and the extension of the Esterley Tibbetts Highway up to Batabano in West Bay has been completed. The Cayman Islands government will be required to pay for any budget overruns for the road widening between the Butterfield roundabout and Lawrence Boulevard. The widening of the smaller section of road just west of the Camana Bay complex will be paid for entirely by Dart and the National Roads Authority will have to first approve its design.
Completion of the widening of both sections will be done in conjunction with one another, according to the agreement.
The proposed third amendment to the roads authority agreement also contains a cost estimate for the construction of a new road through Barkers in West Bay.
According to a map in the appendix of the agreement, existing public right of way of about 6,400 feet will be closed off and vested. Another road will be constructed through the southern end of the Barkers peninsula.
“The road will follow the existing dyke roads and so the site clearance will not be required,” the amendment states. “We assume, however, that some additional fill will be required to widen the existing dyke road and to bring the road to acceptable levels.”
The Barkers road plan assumes no excavation at the site will be needed. Fill for the existing dyke roads and the construction of the road itself will comprise most of the construction cost of the road, which will be a “chip-n-spray” pathway.
The estimated cost for the project is slightly more than $991,000, according to records contained within the third amendment to the National Roads Authority agreement.
The Barkers road is being planned as a way to provide access to an “eco-tourism” hotel in the Barkers area; one of five hotel projects contained in Dart Realty’s long-term construction plan.
The “eco-hotel” is the smallest of the five proposed tourism accommodation with 100 rooms.