ST JOHN’S, Antigua – The Public Works Department is currently awaiting bids to initiate a $1.3 million upgrade of the old headquarters of the National Office of Disaster Services (NODS).
The development has already been approved in this year’s budget cycle and completion is expected by the end of the year.
Director of NODS Philmore Mullin said the entire structure would be remodelled to expand NODS’ operations.
“The process has started, they have sent out for tender. I think what they had to do was a drawing and then they will move from that stage to what the new building will look like. That process has been completed and we now need to meet to determine how the process moves forward,” Mullin said.
Mullin said the officials at Public Works have assessed the structural soundness of the facility and they are convinced that renovations with minor adjustments to the foundation will be sufficient.
He also expressed concern over the timeline left in the budget cycle to get the project off the ground.
“If they say they can do it then who am I to question, I can only hope that the process will be completed during that timeframe,” the NODS said.
According to the director, staff currently occupy the emergency operation centre, which creates considerable hiccups in cases of disaster responses.
He added that once the renovations are complete, the administrative operations will be shifted to the new edifice.