BASSETERRE, ST. KITTS, SEPTEMBER 9TH 2013 (CUOPM) – Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the St. Christopher Air and Sea Ports Authority (SCASPA), Mr. Jonathan Bass says a number of capital projects will upgrade and maintain the facilities at the ports of entry on St. Kitts.
In a statement to mark SCASPA’s 20th Anniversary, Mr. Bass said the projects – some completed, underway and proposed – include the construction of a second pier at Port Zante, a breasting dolphin at the commercial pier, the solar farm and improvements at the Robert L. Bradshaw International Airport.
Mr. Bass said the temperature control system at the Robert L. Bradshaw International Airport terminal is ongoing and the replacement of the underground electrical cables to improve the efficiency of the Airport run-way lighting system should be completed by mid September.
He said the construction of a breasting-dolphin at the commercial cargo pier at Bird Rock to accommodate larger is expected to be completed by the end of November.
“The construction of a 750 kilowatts solar farm at the Robert L. Bradshaw International Airport is on-going and is expected to be completed by the middle of September. The construction of this farm highlights SCASPA’s thrust to becoming a greener port and will result in the removal of the need for full dependency on fossil-fuel powered energy from SCASPA’s cost structure,” said Mr. Bass.
He said this will result in savings of EC$1 million annually.
SCASPA’s CEO also disclosed that ppreliminary engineering work on the second pier at Port Zante has begun and construction is expected to commence shortly and is scheduled to be completed by January 2015.
“The pier, to be located west of the current pier, will be able to comfortably accommodate the largest type of cruise ships now in operation, the Oasis class,” said Mr. Bass.
He said that the Fixed Base Operation, located to the west of the main terminal of the Robert L. Bradshaw International Airport will soon be completed.
“This private terminal will cater to commercial and private travellers who are prepared to pay extra for personalised fast-tracking and concierge type services,” said Mr. Bass, who added that work on the expansion of the arrival hall at the Robert L. Bradshaw International Airport Terminal will commence during the month of September.
He said this is the first project in a phased series of renovations to reconfigure and modernize the terminal.
“On completion of this first phase, the space in the arrival hall will increase by 1600 square feet and it will have the capacity to accommodate an additional 200 passengers and four additional positions for immigration officers. This project should be completed by the end of October just before the peak season begins,” said Mr. Bass.
He said the future is bright for the Federation’s cruise shipping and cargo operations and based on berthing requests, SCASPA expecting over 725,000 cruise passengers to visit St. Kitts for the 2013/2014 season and just over 925,000 passengers for the 2014/2015 season.
“It is anticipated that cruise passenger numbers will increase significantly when the second pier is completed. With the increase in cruise passenger arrivals and construction of hotels and the eventual increase in hotel rooms, we anticipate an upsurge in cargo throughput,” Mr. Bass said.