Guernsey capital projects decision set for October

A decision on Guernsey’s paused capital investment plans is expected to take place in October.

This month, the government announced a “short delay” to the publication of the plan and portfolio, which had been due to be released in August.

The capital portfolio sets out the States’ priorities for major building and infrastructure projects, while the funding and investment plan addresses how it intends to finance these.

In its statement, the States of Guernsey said that, over the past few months, “a very significant amount of work” had gone into reviewing both of these documents.

“It is a complex piece of work, and the committee is taking more time to finalise some of the details, mindful of the importance of this debate in ensuring there is sufficient funding available for essential investment in the Bailiwick’s public infrastructure,” it continued.

“The committee expects it will only require a short delay, and therefore intends to publish in September and will propose that the debate is held in October.”

In March, the government of Guernsey paused all of its planned capital projects – then valued at £460m – after failing to agree on tax plans during the previous month to tackle a budget deficit.

At the time, the States of Guernsey’s policy and resources committee asked officials to carry out a review into all planned projects, which would be considered at a meeting in July.

But in June, the committee set out a new timetable to publish key policy documents. A revised capital portfolio, along with a funding and investment plan, was set to be debated by the policy and resources committee in September.

In June, Guernsey’s government also said it was considering borrowing to fund its projects, which would otherwise be unaffordable.

Planned projects include the construction of a post-16 education campus at Les Ozouets – part of a £100m initiative to reorganise secondary and post-16 provision.

Guernsey-based firm RG Falla was chosen for the contract to build the campus in May last year. But in December the States said it had decided to withdraw from the relationship and was reviewing alternative options with other firms.

Another major project is the modernisation of Princess Elizabeth Hospital, which was previously expected to take seven years and cost more than £100m.

Guernsey firm Rihoy & Son was appointed as the principal contractor for the first phase and began work last year. Meanwhile, Currie & Brown was engaged by the States to project-manage phase one, which was expected to cost approximately £32m in total.

The second phase had been due to start in 2024. The island’s government announced it had selected preferred designs in December 2022.

That month, Guernsey approved a redevelopment of Alderney Airport, then valued at £24m, which included lengthening the runway and constructing a new terminal building. Procurement for the project began in May. Guernsey Ports’ chief operating officer said a shortlist of firms would be invited to submit detailed proposals this year, with the intention of awarding a contract at the beginning of 2024 and work beginning on site that spring.

In May, Mark Helyar, vice-president of the policy and resources committee, told the BBC that he believed the hospital and campus projects were “simply unaffordable”, and that he was unlikely to support either.

In March, a committee spokesperson told Construction News: “No projects where a contract has been agreed are affected and these are proceeding as planned, including phase one of the hospital-modernisation project. Where there is a case for new, urgent funding for capital projects, these are also still being considered as normal.”

Source link

About The Author

Scroll to Top