The Sugar Dock Pavilion in Chalan Kanoa, which has served the community as a place of gathering and celebration for over 30 years, is getting a makeover.
Officials, government and non-government representatives, and other community members came together yesterday to break ground on the rehabilitation of the Sugar Dock Pavilion—the first of many projects under the government’s Infrastructure Rehabilitation Program.
Prim Tech is the project’s contractor. Work on the site will start today, Tuesday, and construction will be complete in about 30 to 45 days, depending on the weather.
The original pavilion has deteriorated over the years due to impacts of Typhoon Soudelor in 2015 and Super Typhoon Yutu and 2018. The Bantalan Sugar Dock Inc. rebuilt a makeshift structure at the site, but they wanted to “do this the right way. …We started seeking the help of the governor and the Infrastructure Recovery Program to help us rebuild the pavilion. …We thank you all for the support,” said former lawmaker Martin Ada of Sugar Dock Inc.
Gov. Ralph DLG Torres said that that Ada, Keith Ada, and Ray Villagomez—all of them Sugar Dock Inc. members—approached him around October or November last year, and said that they would like him to meet with the group because they were concerned about the pavilion. They wanted to see how the governor and the IRP could help.
Initially, Torres thought the rebuilding “would be done in 30 days or 60 days” but it wasn’t that straightforward. He said it took them several months to hurdle all the requirement of permitting agencies “because we want to do it right.”
“They have a vision, a vision to make Bantalan and their pavilion a better place for everybody,” Torres said about Sugar Dock Inc. Among the amenities planned for the pavilion is to install a water station in the pavilion and two or three showerheads. “So it’s not just the people in Precinct 2 who can utilize the water, but the whole people of the CNMI and our tourists,” Torres added.
IRP coordinator Marianne Concepcion-Teregeyo said that yesterday’s turnout is evidence of how much support people have for new infrastructure projects. “We’re happy that our lead engineer, Mario, has been able to come up with a really strong design. As a certified engineer, you’re not going to have a structure like that,” she says, pointing at the makeshift pavilion. “It’s going to be built as new and as stout as all the Bantalan Inc. members. The Bantalan members are really resilient. You guys have stuck through and are makeshift carpenters with the pavilion that you have. And we’re pleased that…we were able to come up with a really good, sturdy design.”
According to Teregeyo, this is the first of many projects for the IRP. “The next groundbreaking will be in conjunction with [the Department of Public Lands] for the homestead subdivision program for water and wastewater. Also with [Department of Public Works] and Commonwealth Utilities Corp.] real soon for the Garapan waterline-sewerline project. So we’re moving along.”