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VIPA Outlines Capital Projects for the Year

Jan. 28, 2005 – The V.I. Port Authority's capital projects for the year were spelled out Thursday for the Rotary Club of St. Thomas. Executive Director Darlin Brin presented VIPA's $72 million operating budget, with $39 million of that going to capital projects. Brin focused his presentation on the developments at the Red Hook ferry dock and the Crown Bay Commercial Center.
A $9 million Red Hook marine facility will include a new barge ramp, a new dock with an 8,000-square-foot terminal building, and a paved parking lot. It is expected to be completed by May 2006. Other parking improvements will include turning a field west of Ivanna Eudora Kean High School into a parking lot. Taxi operations will also be moved to that location, and a shuttle will transport passengers back and forth to the ferry dock. The new lot will alleviate the long line of roadside parking along the salt pond.
The construction of the Crown Bay Commercial Center is coming along slowly, he said. The 60,000-square-foot center, adjacent to the expanded cruise ship pier, will house retail and service spaces catering to cruise ship passengers and the public. According to Brin there has been a lot of interest from tenants wanting to lease the spaces. Brin said the $18 million center will be complete by the end of May.
Other projects in the works:
-Construction of the Enighed Marine Cargo Facility on St. John will be complete by the middle of this year. The $13 million project has been funded primarily from GARVEE bonds issued by the V.I. Government and Department of Public Works under the Federal Highway Administration. The facility will shift all cargo and automobiles moving through Cruz Bay "Creek" to Enighed Pond.
-Territorywide security enhancement of marine facilities will include the installation of fences and other security devices at VIPA's marine terminals. A $2 million grant from the Department of Homeland Security will bring port security up to date with U.S. Coast Guard requirements.
-The Federal Aviation Administration will fund $5 million in improvements at Cyril E. King Airport. The asphalt taxi lane next to the terminal will be replaced with concrete at a cost of $2 million. Phase One of shore protection will include the placement of dolos along the shoreline in order to protect the airport taxiway, Esso fuel storage tanks and the sewage lagoon at a cost of $3 million.

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