Trinidad and Tobago
This article was added by the user . TheWorldNews is not responsible for the content of the platform.

Repairs on Red House’s north chamber to be done by end of April

Elizabeth Gonzales In this file photo, workers carry out repairs on the roof of the Red House in January. - Photo by Sureash Cholai
In this file photo, workers carry out repairs on the roof of the Red House in January. - Photo by Sureash Cholai

FOUR months after the Red House's north chamber had to be closed, repairs are expected to be done on April 28 so that it could be handed over to the Parliament's House of Representatives by April 29.

Last November, the chamber was closed after "material dislodged" from the ceiling on November 5, 2022. Less than a week later, Udecott promised the issue would be resolved “in short order.”

It was later revealed that decorative moulding had broken off from a small section of the ceiling. That was caused by condensation within the attic.

The contractor, Fides Ltd, was notified and found that the dislodging was caused by the age of the ceiling and the condensation was caused by the air conditioning.

At the time, Urban Development Corporation (Udecott) chairman Noel Garcia said the remedial work should be completed in 26 days but, almost five months later, repairs are still in progress.

In an update in the Senate on Wednesday, acting leader of government business Paula Gopee-Scoon said the repairs were 85 per cent complete.

She was responding to a request by Opposition Senator Wade Mark for a status report from Udecott and the Government on the outstanding repairs.

Mark vowed to consistently raise the matter until the roof was repaired and a proper report was given by the health and safety department.

He said, “It is shameful that after November, December, January, February, March – close to five months – a Parliament that costs us close to half a billion has to be settled for its deliberation in one chamber, which is our chamber, and the Government is silent, the chairman of Udecott is silent. No word.

“I am concerned about where we are. The structural integrity of the building needs to be examined and we need to get a proper report on the safety of this building. It was the House of Representatives yesterday. Tomorrow it might be the Senate and, up to now, no report."

In response, Gopee-Scoon explained that in following recommendations after site visits: the ductwork joints were examined and the existing compromised external fibreglass insulation was removed and replaced with flexible closed-cell elastomeric thermal insulation.

She added, “There was a need for a repurposing to supply cool air into the north link chamber space to assist in alleviating the conditions that caused the condensation in the first place.”

The ductwork is 85 per cent complete.

“All sections of the ductwork repairs have been inspected and they have been approved by the consultant and the related inspection reports, thus far, have been prepared. There are still the remaining ductwork repairs to be done and these works are to be completed by April 7."

The insulation material required to complete the repair will be shipped from the manufacturer to TT by April 7. The reinstallation work is expected to be completed in 15 days.

“Nearing the completion of the air conditioning works, work will begin on the installation of additional ceiling supports and any other fixes. All of these will be performed by the restoration contractor at no cost to the Parliament.”

Final touches should be done by April 28 for the handover on April 29.