The preliminary phase for the construction of the bridge over the Corantijn River is nearing completion, while Suriname is covering the costs for the preliminary study. During the second ministerial meeting in Georgetown, Guyana, the engineering firm WSP Caribbean presented the results of the preliminary studies.
In May of this year, an update was given in Paramaribo on the progress of the preliminary phase. Minister Riad Nurmohamed of Public Works (OW) stated from the neighboring country that the plans are on schedule. A summit at which decisions will be taken at the level of heads of state will follow shortly.
The technical details are now known. The intended start date for construction work is before the end of this year. Five leading companies that meet the requirements are participating in the public tender. The bridge will be built in a public-private partnership (PPP) according to the design-build-finance-operate-maintain (DBFOM) model.
During the working visit, the results of the research were presented to Minister Nurmohamed and fellow Minister Juan Edghill of Guyana. WSP Caribbean was selected last year after a public tender. The costs for the preliminary study are covered by Suriname. Design and feasibility studies have now been completed, along with all geotechnical tests and studies necessary to proceed with construction of the bridge.
A topographical assessment, traffic forecasts, PPP evaluation, legal framework, tender documents for DBFM models and the preliminary design of the bridge and roads are in the final stages. The selected companies can submit their final proposals until August 1, 2023. Subsequently, the selection will be made jointly by both OW ministries. The estimated duration of construction work is three years.
Minister Nurmohamed emphasizes that the bridge between Suriname and Guyana is part of a broader development vision. The positive spin-off effects of the project will be enormous, namely employment, promotion of regional trade and industry, stimulus for Surinamese companies and further opening up of the region.