If everything goes according to plan, the National Roads Authority will reopen Godfrey Nixon Way Tuesday morning. The road will close at 7 p.m. Monday, and NRA crews plan to complete the paving work overnight and reopen both lanes by Tuesday morning.
Work on the major George Town connector street began in early April, but frequent rains and a collapsed manhole have delayed the project by weeks and caused traffic backups.
NRA senior engineer Edison Jackson said Monday morning, “We hope to get all the paving done tonight, barring any unforeseen circumstances.”
Mr. Jackson said once the paving is complete, both lanes will reopen permanently, connecting Eastern Avenue to the Butterfield roundabout on North Sound Road. Crews will still have to paint the striping for the road and finish the sidewalks. Mr. Jackson expects that will take another week, but it will not have a major impact on traffic.
Heavy rains earlier this month wreaked havoc on the road and caused numerous delays. Rains and traffic left the unfinished dirt side of the road pockmarked with potholes and mud puddles.
The weather and heavy use caused so much damage to the temporary dirt road that a manhole collapsed, leading to emergency repairs and even further delays. The rains, Mr. Jackson said earlier this month, “absolutely destroyed” the unfinished road.
NRA crews began working two shifts, in the mornings and overnight, to make up for lost time. “When we get a break in the weather, we get as much work done as we can,” he said at the time.
The Godfrey Nixon Way widening project is part of a bigger effort to improve traffic in George Town. The $27 million overall plan, in addition to the Godfrey Nixon work, includes widening Smith Road between the Cayman Islands Hospital and Bobby Thompson Way, and improvements to Edward and Fort streets.
Government also plans an expansion of the Linford Pierson Highway.
NRA senior planner Marion Pandohie said the Smith Road widening, which will add a turning lane between the two travel lanes, will be the next big road project on Grand Cayman. She said the NRA does not yet have a start date for that work.