Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : June 14th 2015 Contents news
June 14, 2015 www.guardian.co.tt Sunday Guardian
The $400 million Curepe Inter-
change project is expected to start
within the next 30 days, with Nidco
choosing to jointly award the con-
tract for the project to the two top
bidders following a public falling
out over the tendering process late
Former junior minister in the Min-
istry of Works and Infrastructure
Stacy Roopnarine had fallen out with
her boss Dr Suruj Rambachan, after
it was revealed then that local con-
tractor, Lutchmeesingh Transport
Company had been selected for the
job though it ranked second in the
tender screening process. It was
revealed that first-ranked bidder Vinci
Construction lost out because of its
high costing for the mega-job.
The Sunday Guardian has since
learned that though Lutchmeesingh
was selected, Nidco-based
engineers objected on the basis that
the company s tender contained
However, in fresh developments,
Nidco has decided to award the proj-
ect jointly to the two top bidders.
"We are currently in negotiations
with the first and second bidder,"
Nidco chairman Dr Carson Charles
There is no word as to what
prompted these fresh negotiations or
who made the call to have the job
shared between the two top-ranked
bidders, but Charles confirmed that
the project would be offered to both
contractors, after months of the proj-
ect being on hold and talks of quash-
ing the bid and restarting the tender
Back in November, it was reported
that the two top bidders had been
rejected on the basis of price and
expertise, respectively. Charles con-
firmed to the Sunday Guardian that
Nidco s engineering team had found
that several major items were not
catered for in the tender submitted
by Lutchmeesingh, leading to Nidco
overturning that company s selection
for the project previously.
Nidco had been reported then as
weighing additional options to get
the job done.
The tenure of Nidco s board ended
in December 2014 and left the future
of the Curepe Interchange in limbo.
Charles had said then that he expect-
ed the project to be finalised and
awarded by January 2015 but, almost
six months later, the project remained
"We could not come to an agree-
ment with Vinci Construction based
on the cost of its tender and with
Lutchmeesingh, the negotiation com-
mittee was not convinced that they
had the ability to complete the job,"
"Quite frankly, there were three
contractors selected and we were not
satisfied with any."
Despite Charles misgivings, the
project is expected to come before
the Nidco executive within the next
month and awarded soon after.
"We are seeking to work out a solu-
tion so that we can use the specific
expertise from both companies,"
The project is expected to be com-
pleted 18 months after it begins.
Vinci/Lutchmeesingh to share
$400m Curepe Interchange project
Key among the projects to be
completed at a rapid rate is the now 50
per cent completed billion-dollar
highway to Point Fortin. The Sunday
Guardian has learned that Nidco is now
in talks with all major road contractors,
including Junior Sammy, Seereram
Brothers and Lutchmeesingh, for them
to work as a unit to complete the road
works in conjunction with Brazil-based
OAS Construction, which controls the
"So much is going on at Nidco,"
"We are currently in talks with the
major contractors in the country to
sub-contract the work on the Point
Fortin highway and complete that
project by next year," he said.
He said that Rambachan was
expected to open a bridge in Claxton
Bay today and has plans for another 20
bridges within the next few months.
Nidco has also started work on
landslips around the country and has
been given a five-year mandate to work
on some 600 landslips, as well as
several drainage projects under the
Ministry of the Environment and Water
Charles said another big project---the
Diego Martin Interchange---was
expected to be tabled soon.
"That project is currently at the
design stage and is with the
consultant," Charles said.
Charles said Nidco was also at the
execution stage of the Port-of-Spain
flood alleviation project which has been
funded by the Inter-American
Development Bank for well over half-a-
Pupils of the 2015
graduating class of
School toss their
graduation caps into
the air after their
at school on Friday.
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