Seven years late: The victor bruce complex
By Elizabeth Williams
The long-awaited Victor E Bruce Financial Complex in Scarborough, Tobago was finally delivered last Monday, seven years late and $81 million over budget.
The complex was started in 2004 and was supposed to be completed in time for the 2005 Tobago House of Assembly (THA) elections.
The projected cost at that time for the project was $22 million.
The project has actually been completed at a cost of $103 million, million over budget.
The THA has shouldered the responsibility for the delays in the completion of the project, of which special purpose company, the Urban Development Corporation of Trinidad and Tobago (UDeCOTT) was the project manager. Central Government's contribution was $16.7 million.
The building was named after Tobagonian Victor Edward Bruce, who was the first local Central Bank Governor in 1969.
In paying tribute to him, Central Bank Governor Ewart Williams, who was present at the opening ceremony, said this was a proud moment for Tobago.
"This initiative coming on the heels of the renaming of the Arthur NR Robinson Airport, is a clear demonstration to recognise and to pay tribute to those who have made exceptional contributions to our society," Williams said.
Victor E Bruce assisted in the restoration of Tobago's economy, after the impact of hurricane Flora in 1963.
"Under Bruce the bank became an important player in the economic life of our nation, as well as an active and respected participant in regional and international forums," Williams said.
The financial complex contains ten departments to house approximately 250 people.
The new building has a supervised study room, for the children of staff.
In his feature address, THA Chief Secretary Orville London said the building was a testament for generations to come.
He also announced that the Scarborough Library, another mega project undertaken by the Assembly, will be delivered between September and October, and that the process towards delivery of these projects has been both inspirational and a challenge.
"We already have the designs for the new market, it is just that we are waiting on certain issues to be resolved, before we implement the movement of the new market out of Scarborough," London said.
Following the official ceremony, there was the unveiling of the cornerstone, unveiling of signage and viewing of the building.