STADIUM CONSTRUCTION IN ST. KITTS & NEVIS CONTINUES APACE
The construction process at the Bird Rock athletic stadium remains on schedule.
That assurance was given by Project Manager Wycliffe Morton Jr. He was at the time updating Minister of State with responsibility for Sports Hon. Richard Skerritt during a site visit. Minister Skerritt was joined by other government officials as well as representatives of the St. Kitts Amateur Athletic Association and members of the local organizing committee for the 2008 CARIFTA Games.
?We do not foresee any problems in (completing) the project on time,? Morton reported. ?All of the lead times that we have were anticipated and we expect that the first set of heavy material (such as steel) will arrive on site in the next two weeks.?
Most of the building materials the project manager referred to are being custom made in various countries including Trinidad and the United States.
The Class 2 facility is being built to certification standards set by the International Association of Athletics Federation (IAAF). It will feature a 400-meter synthetic athletic track, a 200-meter warm up track, two long jump pits and sections for other related activities. An exercise track will ring the facility for use by community residents.
The construction of a football field inside of the 400 meter track is planned. Minister Skerritt stressed that the stadium was designed primarily for athletics.
?This is about the government delivering on a promise to the athletic association to give (them) the opportunity to prepare their athletes at international standards,? he explained. ?The kind of performances we?ve been doing at international events, without having a home base such as this tells you what the possibilities will be if we had a home base like this.?
The minister of state for sports added that concerns from the community were taken into consideration during the stadium design process. This is demonstrated in the inclusion of the exercise track as well as the use of chain link fencing which residents requested to ensure the aesthetics of the area was maintained.
Minister Skerritt described this consultation as important and noted that community groups will have access to the facility when it is completed. He suggested the possibility of hosting community-based athletic competitions and similar activities at the stadium.
?Each time it will have to be supervised, and the use of the facility has to be very carefully managed because this is a high cost track and it cannot be abused,? Minister Skerritt said.