Muscatine, Iowa — Stanley Consultants was on hand in St. Catherine, Jamaica on March 23 to celebrate the grand opening of the North-South Highway. This 41-mile section completes the link between the capital city of Kingston in the South with the tourist city of Ocho Rios in the North.  A drive that formerly took two hours on a substandard road can now be completed in less than 60 minutes on a new four-lane highway built to international standards. 

Stanley Consultants, a global consulting engineering company headquartered in Muscatine, assisted the Government of Jamaica with the project, through the state-owned National Road Operating and Construction Company (NROCC), by providing technical guidance for design and construction of the highway. Stanley Consultants served as a Grantor’s Representative (technical adviser) to NROCC, providing design and program review, performing routine construction observations and liaising with government and private sector entities affected by the project.

"The North-South Highway will make it easier for residents on the south coast to enjoy the amenities on the north coast without a time-consuming and dangerous drive," said Stanley Consultants Team Leader Bob Jacobs. "It will also enable tourists from the north coast to visit attractions on the south coast, hopefully increasing tourist revenue."

Jamaicans hope the new highway will play a crucial role in helping to resuscitate Jamaica’s economy, upgrading the infrastructure, providing economic opportunities for growth, and creating jobs. "We must treat this roadway as a runway for other investment projects to take off and secure a brighter, more prosperous future for Jamaica," Jamaican Prime Minister Andrew Holness said at the opening ceremony at the Caymanas Toll booth in St. Catherine.

Stanley Consultants has a long history providing transportation services in Jamaica. The firm also provided design and construction services for the 168-mile-long North Coast Highway, which Jamaicans refer to as a “national treasure.” Completed in 2009, the North Coast Highway connects Montego Bay to Negril on the island's west end, and to Port Antonio on the east end of the island. It is Jamaica's only modern arterial highway connecting major cities on the country's east and west coasts.