Beautiful Virgin Islands

Sunday, Dec 04, 2022

Hon Rymer 'justifies' $1M elevator for Admin Complex

Hon Rymer 'justifies' $1M elevator for Admin Complex

When it was disclosed to the public that a new elevator for Ralph T. O’Neal Administration Complex will cost the Government of the Virgin Islands over one million dollars, according to a Cabinet Post Meeting Statement released on, May 12, 2022, there were lots of feedback from the public regarding the cost and whether that money could be better spent elsewhere.

According to the Post-Cabinet Statement, the contract for the elevator project was approved by Cabinet on April 27, 2022. It said Cabinet accepted the Central Tenders Board’s recommendation to award Building Construction Management Group Ltd. a contract for the construction of the new elevator shaft, procurement, installation and commissioning of the new elevator in the amount of one million, seventy-six thousand, seven hundred and ninety-six dollars and ninety-nine cents ($1,076,796.99).

Elevator for ‘disabled & elderly persons’- Hon Rymer


Deputy Premier and Minister for Communications and Works Hon Kye M. Rymer (R5), in a statement during the 3rd Sitting of the 4th Session of the 4th House of Assembly (HoA) at Save the Seed Energy Centre in Duff’s Bottom, Tortola today, May 26, 2022, went into detail about the magnitude of the project and the reason for it in the first place.

He said one of the areas that complaints were lodged even prior to the damages sustained to the building in 2017 was a lack of access for disabled and elderly persons on the West Atrium in reaching the upper floors.

“To that effect, a design was developed several years ago that we have dusted off and enhanced to construct a new elevator housing and lobby area for an elevator system.”

He said the designs for the new elevator were prepared by OBM International, which ironically was a company that prepared the original elevator design many years ago, therefore making the engagement to update the design a seamless process.

Deputy Premier and Minister for Communications and Works Hon Kye M. Rymer (R5), in a statement during the 3rd Sitting of the 4th Session of the 4th House of Assembly (HoA) at Save the Seed Energy Centre in Duff’s Bottom, Tortola today, May 26, 2022, went into detail about the magnitude of the project and the reason for it in the first place.


Lowest bid was chosen


“Madam Speaker, the tender documents were issued and two bidders submitted bids on the 14th of December 2021 to the Central Tenders Board at the Ministry of Finance. The two bidders were Building Construction Management Group with a bid of $1, 076,796.99, and Accurate Construction with a bid price of $1,575,920.34.”

Hon Rymer added that an independent estimate was “quantified as to a means of evaluation at $1,115,257.”

Building Construction Management Group Ltd has been awarded the contract for the construction of a new elevator shaft, procurement, installation and commissioning of a new elevator for the West Atrium of the Ralph T. O'Neal Administration Complex in the amount of one million, seventy-six thousand, seven hundred and ninety-six dollars and ninety-nine cents ($1,076,796.99).


Scope of works


The Works Minister continued that the new elevator corridor and lobby area will be “appended” to the Administration Complex and the works will require cutting the walls to create openings on all the floors to access the new elevator from inside of the Administration Complex.

He said the new elevator construction will have a building footprint of approximately 17 feet in length, 10 feet in width and extend 45 feet in height, from the existing ground level.

“The project will require six reinforced concrete piles and associated pile caps. It will require excavation, foundation works, and construction of the concrete reinforced elevator pit and base slab including footing and foundation walls.”

According to Hon Rymer, once the foundation and piling are completed construction of the superstructure comprising metal beams and columns will commence. He said the flooring of the lobby area will comprise of concrete placed on Vulcraft craft metal composite decking.

Additionally, the Minister stated that the elevator will be fitted with approximately 1500 square feet of cement board cladding in an 8-inch metal stone.

There will also be 253 square feet of impact glass to create a view out of the elevator on the southern side of the enclosure.

Hon Rymer said other works will entail interior drywall, floor and ceiling tiles, painting, electrical plumbing and provision for the mechanical works, communication systems and fire safety systems.

“Madam Speaker, you may have realised from what has been detailed that a substantial amount of work is required to facilitate the overall elevator project.”

According to Deputy Premier and Minister for Communications and Works Hon Kye M. Rymer (R5), even prior to the damages sustained to the building in 2017, complaints were lodged about the lack of access for disabled and elderly persons on the West Atrium in reaching the upper floors of Ralph T. O’Neal Administration Complex.


OTIS Gen2 elevator system


According to Hon Rymer, the elevator to be installed is an OTIS Gen2 elevator system and is one of the most reliable elevators currently on the market, based on technology.

“I went into great details for Members to know that this elevator project is a comprehensive and complex project reviewed by external consultants and the technical personnel within the Ministry of Communications and Works.”

Hon Rymer said Government anticipates this project will provide an overall benefit and enhancement to the administration complex, it seeks to modernise and upgrade the services offered to the public.

“This will be done by ensuring that all persons within our community are not disadvantaged in accessing the ministries and departments at the Ralph T. O’Neal Administration Complex,” Hon Rymer stated.

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