LONG ISLAND — Prime Minister and Minister of Finance the Most Hon. Dr. Hubert Minnis today officially opened two infrastructure projects for Long Island – the Newton Cay Bridge and Monument Road.
The bridge crossing at Newton Cay provides access across a small creek from northern Long Island to the spectacular beach of Newton Cay.
The replacement was necessary so that both residents and tourists could safely access the cay. The contract for new bridge was in the amount of $407, 000.
Monument Road serves as an access to the popular Columbus Monument landmark, which was erected to commemorate Christopher Columbus landing on Long Island.
The road is part of the Government’s efforts to promote heritage tourism for Bahamians and tourists, said the Prime Minister. It also provides access to the government’s navigational beacon/light house adjacent to the monument.
“One of my greatest missions as prime minister is to ensure that every major island in our archipelago has the infrastructure and amenities needed to improve your quality of life,” said Prime Minister Minnis on Friday 18 December. “Such infrastructure is also essential for your economic and social development.”
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Works Hon. Desmond Bannister, and Long Island MP Mr. Adrian Gibson also took part in the ceremonies.
The Prime Minister said the new bridge to Newton Cay will benefit the marine environment. The original bridge sub-structure was restricting flow of the natural creek channel and severely impacted the natural marine ecosystem in the area.
This included increased sedimentation in the creek, modification of the mangroves and the decrease in the fish larvae export of the inland lagoon.
“The new bridge has a span of 60 feet and will allow for the opening up of a water channel creating unrestricted flow and will aid the natural regeneration of the ecosystem area,” said Prime Minister Minnis.
“This new bridge is good for your environment, your economy and your quality of life.”
Monument Road replaces an old narrow track road that was in very poor condition, making travel difficult and uncomfortable.
The $1.1 million-dollar project included the construction of approximately two miles of pea rock and sand seal asphalt road 24 feet wide to the monument site.
A 6ftt wide concrete walkway and steps were constructed, including landings leading up to the monument. Amenities include a carpark, benches and soft landscaping.
“The completed Monument Road now provides a pleasant, modern, high class road to the monument site, which will be sued by residents and tourists on a regular basis for many years to come,” said the Prime Minister.