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GAMBIA'S TRANSPORT WORKS AND INFRASTRUCTURE MINISTER WITH CHINESE AMBASSADOR ON ICC PROJECT

The International Conference Center project is a China Aid project from the People’s Republic of China to the Gambia Government.

It is a $50 million grant awarded to the Gambia government to construct a state of the art international conference center that is expected to host the upcoming OIC.

The total land area of the project site is 13 HA. The building area including the hard landscape and parking area is 7 HA.

 

There is a counterpart contribution by the Gambia government. This includes the 13 HA land at Bijilo where the building is being constructed, utilities connection and the soft landscaping.

The main conference hall of the ICC has a gross floor area of 14,000 square meters which includes one (1) 1013-seat major conference hall, four (4) 180-seat thematic meeting rooms, one (5) lounges, four (4) press rooms(53 Seats) and news centers, 32 Translation Rooms, 10 Office Spaces, two (2) banquet halls and other accessory rooms.

Its design is inspired by the white waves of the Atlantic Ocean. A spray of white waves is thus created in the cradle of natural seawater of the Atlantic and green forestry of Bijilo. Upon completion it will become the landmark building along The Gambia seafront.

As a policy of China Aid, the Chinese government recruited both the contractor Jaingsu Provincial Company (JPC) and the consultant Sichuan Southwest Project Management & Consultancy Company (SSPMC) which is a subsidiary of China Southwest Architectural Design and Research Institute (CSCEC).

The project however hires local technical staff and labour and offers training to the local staff to improve their skills to meet the demands of such a complex structure. Some construction materials such as cement, sand and gravel are also locally sourced.

The total duration of the project is 24 months and works have already started since August 30th 2017. The project is expected to be complete by August 2019 in time for the upcoming OIC.

 

Preliminary Stage for the Construction of the International Conference Center at Bijilo- Status Updates

  1. Site Investigation and Topographical survey
  2. Geotechnical Investigation
  3. Environmental Impact Assessment
  4. Site Clearance

 

  • Site Investigation and Topographical Survey

A site visit was conducted to confirm the boundary lines in order to ensure that the clearance was done within the designated area. The Ministry of Works and Depart of Lands and surveys conducted this visit. Surveyors from China were able to do the topographical survey and the data was sent to the design team in China.

  • Geotechnical Investigation

A total of 15 boreholes were drilled by GAMECS within a period of approximately 25 days with a depth ranging from 9-22m. Borehole soil samples were sent to the lab at NRA to analysis. Special priority was given to this project to ensure that all samples are tested within a short period of time.

  • Environmental Impact Assessment

As par the agreement signed, it is the responsibility of the Gambia Government to provide a proof of Environmental Impact Assessment (E.I.A). NEA was responsible for the EIA in collaboration with relevant stakeholders.

  • Site Clearance

The Ministry of Transport together with the department of forestry engaged on a system felling of trees. Trees that are in direct interference with the construction areas were cut down as shown in the site layout. It is important to note that there will be a replanting exercise to compensate for the total number of trees felled down. A total of 496 rhun palm boles were cut down at the site to prepare for construction. The clearance process started immediately with the uprooting and disposal of trunks and roots off-site.

Laying Of The Foundation Stone

The laying of the foundation stone was held September 14th 2017 by His Excellency President Adama Barrow and His Excellency the Ambassador of People’s Republic of China, which marked the official commencement of the project. Various dignitaries from the public and private sector graced this occasion.

Project Implementation

The project started immediately after the laying of foundation stone. Excavation for the foundation was first done, followed by construction of the column piles of the foundation. All platforms for the pile foundation were all completed and backfilled. All the ground level foundation was concreted and completed in due time.

Current Progress

All works of the sub-structure were completed in January; the platform of the super-structure is currently under construction. Two tower cranes, a mixing plant, workshops for wood and steel, seven (7) power generators and a training center for capacity building aid the construction of the project.

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