May 8, 2020
ST. CROIX, USVI – The Virgin Islands Housing Finance Authority (VIHFA) has issued a Notice to Proceed to the Department of Public Works (VIDPW) for the first phase of the Design of Improvements for the Donoe Bypass Highway Project with a $2.45 million budget in St. Thomas and the first phase of the Northside Highway Improvements Project with a $3.1 million budget in St. Croix. Both projects are funded by HUD’s Community Development Block Grant – Disaster Recovery Infrastructure Repair and Resilience program. VIHFA administers all CDBG-DR funding for the Territory’s disaster recovery.
The Notice to Proceed (NTP) kicks off the planning and construction process of these major disaster recovery roadwork projects. The first of three phases focus on the Design of Improvements, which includes selecting the architectural/engineering firms to complete the design and environmental process. VIDPW will manage the project, while VIHFA administers the CDBG-DR funds.
“VIHFA is pleased to green light the first phases of the much anticipated Donoe Bypass and Northside Highway projects,” VIHFA Executive Director Daryl Griffith said. “We eagerly support Public Works start of these vital projects.”
Phase 1 of both projects will take approximately 12-18 months to complete. Phase 2 involves the acquisition of any real property needed to execute the projects. The acquisition may include purchasing land, retaining walls, sidewalks, etc. Phase 3 is active construction. Following contract negotiations and cost analyses, roadwork construction is slated to begin mid-2021. The project is expected to be completed by the end of 2022.
“Our mission is to build a more resilient infrastructure and increase the quality of life for our community” said DPW Commissioner Nelson Petty Jr. “The Donoe Bypass Highway Project, Northside Highway Improvements Project, and other similar projects help us to do just that.”
The goals of the Infrastructure Repair and Resiliency Program are to repair and replace damaged infrastructure, harden infrastructure against extreme weather events, and to construct new infrastructure to improve the level of service to communities.
Additional programs funded under the CDBG-DR Infrastructure Sector Programs are the Local Match for Federal Disaster Relief Programs and the Electrical Power Systems Enhancement and Improvement.