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Fri 14th Nov 2014

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Argyle airport set to take at least 4 more years

The Argyle airport will take at least another 4 years, and even then, it is highly unlikely that it will get an International Civil Aviation Organisation licence to operate, because of the very dangerous, gusty, side-winds at Argyle.

Over 700 million dollars has been wasted at Argyle, but no cost – benefit analysis has ever been presented to the public to show Argyle will boost the SVG economy. It was foolhardy to waste 700 million dollars, without spending a few thousand dollars on a cost – benefit analysis study.

There are still many massive jobs to do at Argyle. The Yambou river needs to be culverted and covered or else there will be a big gap in the runway.

The runway has been shifted anti-clockwise from the 02/20 orientation recommended by the Argyle airport Environmental Impact Assessment (source: EIA page 34). The Peruvian Vale village and cliff is now a flight safety hazard for planes in final approach. The ULP regime will most likely have to give notice to the Peruvian Vale village residents to move them.

If the villagers agree to move, the ULP regime will need to agree an amount of financial compensation for the villagers. Even after agreeing a compensation price, it will take some time before the villagers are going to be paid, because the government is virtually broke. Figures from the Ministry of Finance indicate that the government can barely pay government workers.

Somewhere will need to be found for the villagers to live and new houses built for them. After that, the Peruvian Vale village and whole cliff-side will need to be knocked down. It will then take many months more to move the thousands of tonnes of soil.

Then the windward highway needs to be re-routed, again, to take the road via Yambou. This is yet another example of the wastefulness and poor planning of the incompetent ULP regime.

Even after all that, the airport still does not have a runway. The incompetent ULP regime talks about ‘completion’ because they got shiny, new fire trucks for the airport, but the one thing they fail to realise is that every airport needs a runway and Argyle has not got a functioning runway!

The northern end of the runway area ends in the sea. Although, they have put some rocks and soil there to try and build it up, this is continually being washed away by the sea, almost as soon as it is put there. Even if they find a solution to stop the northern end from being washed away by the sea, the soil put there needs to be left a couple of years to compact naturally.

Modern passenger aircrafts are heavy: fully loaded, Jumbo jets can weigh up to 400 tonnes and Airbus planes up to 590 tonnes. With this much weight on it, the runway will just break up if it is not compacted properly over a number of years.

As the government is virtually broke, all these massive jobs listed above will have to be done one after the other, when and if, any money comes in.

Both the ULP and NDP regimes seem intent on wasting millions of dollars more on Argyle, to build the airport for tourists. It is only SVG Green Party that is saying we must put Vincentians first, not tourists. Our people cannot afford to wait 4 more years to get jobs. Businesses cannot afford to have 4 more years of a declining economy and low sales.

A Green government would abort Argyle and focus on boosting the economy and creating thousands of new jobs for our people. A Green government would take back our fish licence from Taiwan and create our own SVG tuna fishing and canning industry to create hundreds of new jobs. We would also tax the super-rich of Mustique and Canouan to bring in revenue to build factories and a university. This will also create hundreds of new jobs.

Vote Green for a strong economy and thousands of new jobs.

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