Utility company G.E.B.E. partners with Simpson Bay Lagoon Authority for renewable energyPOSTED: 11/25/14 10:10 PM
St. Maarten — Installation is currently taking place with respect to the solar metal structure and control boxes that will be used to power the electronic traffic sign matrix boards at the Simpson Bay and Cole Bay Causeway Round-a-bouts.
The Simpson Bay Lagoon Authority (Slac) and NV Gebe are working together to improve public safety and at the same time use renewable energy to make a positive impact on society. As such, NV Gebe has sponsored the equipment, installation and maintenance of solar powered energy to operate the electronic traffic sign matrix boards at the Simpson Bay and Cole Bay Causeway Round-a-bouts.
This phase should be completed within a week. The next phase will be testing and troubleshooting.
SLAC representative Bertrand Peters says that the two matrix boards were installed to alert motorists who are approaching the two Causeway Bridge round-a-bouts about the status of the Causeway Bridge with respect to opening and closure. “We want to improve road safety in that particular area, and the Port St. Maarten approach has always been a pro-active one, and this project is an initiative from that philosophy,” Peters said. “Slac partnered with NV Gebe where it concerns the powering of the matrix boards. Port St. Maarten has been using renewable energy for a number of years at the Dr. A.C. Wathey Cruise & Cargo Facility in Point Blanche,” Peters pointed out.
Port Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Mark Mingo said that Port St. Maarten will use renewable energy where necessary. “This is the wave of the future. Port St. Maarten has been very much involved in making use of renewable energy such as wind-driven turbines and solar operated golf carts. We installed two solar powered lights at the tender pier by the Simpson Bay Police/SLAC/Immigration and Border Protection Sub Station next to the Simpson Bay Bridge.
“Thousands of vehicles utilize the main roadway arteries in the Simpson Bay Village and Cole Bay area’s daily, so from a safety perspective, we took that into consideration. Thousands of tourists including mega yacht guests use drive back and forth. As a modern tourism destination, we have to continually upgrade our infrastructure,” Mingo said.
The port boss thanked NV GEBE management and board for their interests “as we are both working together in the interests of the motorists, the overall community and the environment.” He added that there is much more to be done but he is optimistic of “a long-term mutual beneficial relationship” developing where it concerns the use of renewable energy.
Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of NV GEBE, Rene Gartner said, “We are glad to be a part of this cooperative and progressive project improving public safety while enhancing the awareness of green energy.”