Night landing at Melville Hall by the last quarter of 2009 says Minister for Ports


Roseau, Dominica – November 24, 2008…….. Minister for Public Utilities, Energy and Ports, Hon. Charles Savarin has expressed his satisfaction with the progress of works at the Melville Hall Airport. The Minister made the disclosure during his latest site visit to the Melville Hall Airport last Thursday.

The Minister was accompanied by the Chief Technical Officer in the Ministry of Housing, on special assignment with the Ministry of Public Utilities, Mr. Lucien Blackmoore, Project Supervisor for the Air Access Improvement Programme, Mr. Joseph Flossac, General Manager of the Dominica Air and Sea Ports Authority, (DASPA), Mr. Benoit Bardouille and acting Airport Manager, Miss Hornica Lawrence.


“I believe that we can see now the extent of the project, it is beginning to surface…. We are in what I would refer to as the home stretch. Many of the difficulties have been overcome. In these contracts, you cannot be 100 percent certain that something will not crop up, but at the moment we can say that most of the difficulties have been ironed out,” Hon. Savarin told the media.



The Minister was able to observe for himself the transformation of the arrival and check-in areas, with work advancing with speed on the departure lounge, VIP lounge and areas to house the Post Office, Customs and Souvenir shop. These works fall under Package One (1) of the Air Access Improvement Programme – Terminal Building, Car Park and Access Road. This is being undertaken by contractor Emile Gardakkhan et Fils Ltd at a cost of just over $14 million ECD.



Work is well on schedule with the Sea and River Defence Works at the Airport. The work is being undertaken by Offshore Civil and Marine at a cost of US$8 million. This component is under Packages three (3) and four (4).



The French Company, COLAS is now on site working on Package two (2), that is, the runway extension and apron resurfacing, drainage, navigation and lighting equipment installation, security and fencing. The contract sum for package two is EC$36 million.


Packages three (3) and four(4) contain aspects of earth movement,  river diversion and land reclamation which were  completed by the Venezuelan army Corps of Engineers earlier this year as part of in kind support to the value of US$10 million.


Package Five (5) comprises provision of equipment and training to include navigational aids, meteorological equipment and fire and rescue equipment. Package Six (6) comprises training, CCTV supply and installation, airport furnishing and airport perimeter road for maintenance. The total cost of package five is 4 million Euros.


Minister Savarin is confident that barring unexpected difficulties, the airport project should be completed by the last quarter of 2009.  


The Air Access Improvement Programme is being financed by the European Union and the Government of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela. According to Hon. Charles Savarin, the total cost of the project is in the region of $109 million ECD.

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