A model of the Family Relief Centre’s dome structure that will include plumbing, drainage, a sewer system, and electricity. Photos: Shawn Hanna/Tribune Staff
By KHRISNA RUSSELL
Deputy Chief Reporter
A MAJORITY of the government’s 250 dome structures for displaced Abaco families are expected to be on the island today, according to Iram Lewis, minister of state for disaster preparedness, management and reconstruction.
There is still no definitive date for the completion of the $6.4m temporary dome city, but Mr Lewis said the shell of each structure will take roughly four to six hours to construct. He said teams have been working around the clock to ensure the drainage system is in place to handle waste that will be generated once the city is complete.
A crew of 25 to 50 workers will work to complete the temporary city. “We do have the preparation being completed,” he told The Tribune yesterday. “The water lines are pretty much in so they’ll be connecting to Water and Sewage’s line today (yesterday).
“The service roads are in, the ground is being grated and levelled to receive the domes. All of the RV trailers for the workers who will be doing the construction are on site, so I guess we’ll have a good understanding in terms of timeline by next Tuesday.”
He added: “We have a total of 250 domes. The assembly time of each unit is not that long, but there are so many of them to do, having to replicate over and over is time consuming. If you have a three-man team working with scaffolding in place, a three-man team can do it in less than four to six hours, that’s just to put up the shell itself.
“Then you have to put up the stud wall and you have to put up other things and finish that off so it will take a bit longer.”
On Monday, Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis told reporters the domes will only be in place for two years.
“The rebuilding of Abaco is going to take a long time but the rebuilding has begun,” Dr Minnis said during a press conference following visits to Abaco and its cays over the weekend.
“We must rebuild with great care and attention so that Abaco and the Abaco cays are stronger and more resilient especially in the face of threats from climate change (that) include stronger hurricanes and rising sea levels.
“My team visited the site for the family relief centre. The land has already been cleared. Infrastructure materials are arriving. Trailers for the workers to build the domes are at the site.
“The infrastructure from the family relief centre will remain in place to accommodate permanent housing on the same site, which is near the Spring City Subdivision and the temporary domes will be removed as individuals and families move to their permanent location.
“The family relief centre will be located on government land and will be enclosed and it is anticipated that the family relief centre will be in place for approximately 24 months or two years,” Dr Minnis said.
There have been concerns that the centre is being constructed near a well field in Spring City. However, Mr Lewis has said that this was untrue.