Published On: Wed, Mar 25th, 2020

New hospital project also affected by COVID-19 restrictions

SMGH construction site file photo

CAY HILL — In light of the COVID-19 pandemic and the subsequent traveling restrictions imposed worldwide, one of the consequences is a possible extension of the original construction timeline for St. Maarten General Hospital (SMGH). However, St. Maarten Medical Center (SMMC) and the main contractor are exploring avenues for acceleration of certain aspects of the project in order to avoid or minimize the impact.

In the preceding months, the first construction activities in relation to the SMGH project have taken place which mainly consisted of mobilization activities such as site clean-up, installation of temporary fencing, rerouting of the site drainage system, among other activities.

Due to the travel restrictions currently in effect, key staff of the contractor necessary to activate further construction activities, are not able to travel to St. Maarten. This may result in a delay in the overall construction timeline. However, in the meantime, procurement and design activities have continued as well as site installation activities (including installation of permanent fencing and the site entrance). SMMC and the contractor are investigating all options to further accelerate the project once the airport reopens and construction activities can recommence.

In line with the precautionary measures taken by SMMC and Government in relation to COVID-19, the SMGH project team and the contractor continue activities to complete the final design, however, by working remotely as much as possible and taking the social distancing guidelines into account when in office.

[In photo: St. Maarten General Hospital (SMGH) construction site]