Costly dispute over new Amsterdam metro

25th March 2005, Comments 0 comments

25 March 2005, AMSTERDAM — The construction of the new North-South metro line through Amsterdam has been brought to a standstill under Central Station as two construction companies and the City Council draw battle lines.

25 March 2005

AMSTERDAM — The construction of the new North-South metro line through Amsterdam has been brought to a standstill under Central Station as two construction companies and the City Council draw battle lines.

As the costs of the new metro route continue to mount, Amsterdam Alderman Mark van der Horst admitted the conflict is causing him a lot of headaches. He has accused the construction companies of a lack of "inventiveness".

The construction companies, Strukton and Van Oord, have refused to comment on the matter. Van der Horst could not estimate when or by whom the construction work would be completed.

The new North-South line was budgeted to cost EUR 1.6 billion and scheduled for completion by the end of 2011. Work on the project started two years ago, but the budget has already been raised by EUR 100 million.

Few problems were reported thus far in the technically complex project — which is being carried out by largely untried techniques.

But it all went wrong underneath Central Station, with Van der Horst claiming that the construction companies are incapable of building an underground vault to house  metro tube.

Thousands of wooden poles have been removed from under the station and replaced with steel foundations. The companies had to start last month with starting on work that would be used to create a roof for the tunnel.

Extended negotiations that started last year over the methods to be used in constructing the tube, the planning and who would take care of the bill have since stranded.

Van der Horst said relations between the construction companies and the council have soured significantly, newspaper 'De Volkskrant' reported. But the costs of the delays cannot yet be fully calculated.

[Copyright Expatica News 2005]

Subject: Dutch news

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