Submitted by Pheonix
The recent announcement of plans by the present administration to build three (3) concrete tanks for a total cost of $12 Million Bds baffles. That’s a hell of a lot of money . Do tell us someone, are we about to be pouring four foot thick walls of solid concrete structure, with dimensions of 35 feet height x radius 30 feet ? An engineer’s quest indeed to say the least and worthy of full praise if well executed.
The present tanks at the Harbour Rd. are made of steel and have lasted some fifty years or more and have adequately served their purpose. So what’s up with this building of new ones made of concrete? Has it anything to do with ‘veal cuts’ or pork chop cuts? Being in close proximity to a well known now closed watering hole, Porthole, could there be some rub off ? In that now decommissioned greasy joint, you could once get the sweetest and biggest pork chop on the island. However, nowadays Port Inc. once plumped stevedores have made committals to their wives to healthy living and longevity. Not so with these concrete proposal given that we live in the Caribbean.
Is the cost of steel tanks, the only overriding factor as to why the choice of these new concrete novels? Sometimes life span and maintenance considerations should out weigh cost. One should remember we live in the tropics and experience fluid temperature variations. Any learned fifth form lad doing physics at our secondary school would inform, that concrete expands as temperature rises (daytime) and contracts when the temperature drops (night time). Such expansion and subsequent contraction causes concrete side walks to crack. Were it not for some compensative measure, such as the placement of a piece of wood between slabs, to remedy this anomaly, (concrete’s coefficient of linear expansion) our side walks would be cracking up and warping. So much more(one would believe) and this problem be amplified, given the circular shape of tanks. What is the popularity of concrete tanks used internationally anyway, for storing molasses or any product of such high viscosities (unlike H2O) yet another pertinent consideration?
Before we start pouring the duck grey derision ( hopefully not to form egg shells), one would hope a second and even third opinions would have been sought, for a $12 Million bad set would be most unwelcome at this time. Especially when it is coming from money, “we didn’t have.”