Work on government’s stretch of Esterley Tibbetts Highway begins

Heavy machinery takes down the chain-link fence Tuesday at the perimeter of the George Town landfill, beside the Esterley Tibbetts Highway, as expansion work begins along the eastern part of the road. - PHOTO: TANEOS RAMSAY

Clearance work began this week on government-owned land beside the Esterley Tibbetts Highway as part of the ongoing efforts to turn the road into a four-lane highway.

Work has been under way on the western section of road since December last year. On Tuesday, bulldozers and other heavy machinery moved into place on the eastern end of the highway to pull down wire fencing and begin preparation work on the land.

The highway, from the Butterfield Roundabout to the Century 21 Roundabout, is being expanded to four lanes, as part of an agreement between the Cayman Islands Government, the NRA and Dart Realty. When completed, the entire length of the Esterley Tibbetts Highway – from Batabano Road in West Bay to the Butterfield Roundabout in George Town – will be a four-lane, dual-carriage road.

The completion of the road expansion is also intended to be the gateway for a future Airport Connector Road.

As part of the NRA agreement, Dart Realty is constructing the road on behalf of the Cayman Islands government.

The Cayman Islands government is paying Dart US$5.02 million to carry out the highway expansion work, with that money being a portion of a US$14.6 million purchase by the Dart group of the Dragon Bay lands on the North Sound, previously held by the developer on a long-term leasehold agreement that had 75 years remaining.

Preliminary work to widen the southern portion of the highway is expected to begin on Monday, according to a press release issued this week.