The construction schedule for the Safe Harbour project in Snug Cove is now well behind where it was this time last year and is clearly delayed, Secretary of Port of Eden Marina Inc (POEM), Dr Robert Bain said today.
This is despite assurances from the Member for Bega and Minister for Transport and Infrastructure, Andrew Constance that the project will go ahead.
The problem appears to be the cost of the wave attenuator (panel breakwater) and the inexplicable determination of the Government departments not to go out for competitive tenders.
After years of studies and several unsuccessful attempts, a location and design for the attenuator that would maximise the number of safe marina berths was agreed by the Government and POEM in mid 2018.
This has been on display in the window of the shop next to the Post Office in the main Street of Eden for about a year.
This design would provide a safe deepwater harbour for about 170 vessels and give the greatest possible number of jobs and maximum economic benefit for the Eden community from the marina.
The detailed design was completed in late 2018 (at a cost of $3 million) but, rather than go to competitive tender the project was given to Waterways Construction. Waterways put in a very high bid and then decided to close their Eden operation. Since then the project appears stalled.
The budget for the project is $19 million. The cost submitted by Waterways was, we believe, about $23 million or $64,000 per linear metre. The going cost based on similar attenuators built in recent years is around $20,000 per metre. This would mean about $8 million for the Snug Cove attenuator, well within the budget.
Why a relatively straight forward panel breakwater attenuator would cost treble the cost elsewhere and around half as much as the massive wharf and dredging project for the cruise ships remains a mystery.
A competitive tender process for the agreed attenuator is the obvious and risk free solution.
POEM is a non profit, Eden community association that has been working on this project for about 8 years.
Our members believe that Eden needs to capitalise on the great asset which is Snug Cove and future proof the attenuator to the maximum extent possible.
POEM Media Release 11 December 2019