The provincial wharf project in Alotau is now all but complete, with the finalisation of the wharf and pontoon structures involving marine construction vessels and equipment. All marine plant and the majority of personnel have been demobilised. This milestone culminated in the gathering of key stakeholders to witness the late evening testing of the lighting systems.
We were able to see the fruits of our earlier efforts that included the offsite pile splicing and precast concrete production (fabricated at our Townsville Marine Base) which allowed for high standards of Quality Control as well as avoiding unpredictable weather and remote works constraints that impacted works once on site. Import of flyash and concreting additives to Alotau allowed for marine specification concrete production on site, the likes of which had not been produced in the Province before and has likely set a high standard for projects to come.
Under PMG supervision, our engaged national workforce facilitated the pack down and securing of construction barges for transfer to our Lombrum Defence Base Marine Infrastructure Project on Manus Island. Final works currently being completed on site include landside final concreting and interlock paver installation as well as variations to include upgrades to the Western Access fencing, road, shopfront carparking and pedestrian access. The remaining works are completely local subcontractor dependent, showcasing the capacity and skills of businesses in the Milne Bay Province.
Our latest experience in Alotau and Milne Bay has been similar to past interactions. The Provincial Government, Lower Level Urban Government, businesses, workforce and stakeholders have been extremely welcoming, with invaluable input and contributions to this project as a whole. For PMG as an organisation, it has been an absolute pleasure to once again be able to engage (and heavily rely on) PNG national subcontractors, suppliers and workforces across an 8 month construction period. For our expat workforce, they have learnt a lot from the PNG national workforce engaged and were in turn able to help with on site training and upskilling of locals. Through the course of the project, these new skills learnt by locals came to the forefront with our local crew coming into their own and showcasing their newly developed skills combined with already high level existing skillsets.
Local engagement and interaction resulted in positive feedback and gratitude. With our local Safeguards team rolling out key ADB programs focused on protection of local communities, Gender Based Education and HIV/AIDS/STI Education. Extending beyond the requirements of the project site, our local team reached out to numerous community groups, businesses and schools to provide education and training for what is considered culturally cross-cutting topics and problems that face many regions in PNG with Alotau and Milne Bay no exception to that. Sessions included project awareness, feedback pathways awareness, safeguards education and distribution of information pamphlets, posters and condoms as well as discrete assistance in helping community members to go get HIV/AIDS testing.
In summary the project is one that PMG are very proud of. There have been many challenges however these have been overcome to achieve a quality job delivered on time and on budget, that is receiving high praise from the client, interested parties and end users. The project demonstrates our commitment and capabilities to produce high quality marine infrastructure in PNG and the Pacific.