GAUTRAIN COST R30BN AND RISING

The Gautrain’s costs went up about R2 billion in less than a month to more than R30 billion, according to the Johannesburg Star, which quotes the Gautrain Management Agency’s (GMA) 19th quarterly progress report for the period April to June 2011.

“Whether the delays in the launch of the full service because of the water problems are the cause of the escalating costs is not known, but the progress report gives details about the finances of the project and says the province and concessionaire are in dispute over the numerous delays in the completion of the project.

“The GMA report gives the Gautrain’s total cost as R30.462bn. This is made up of R26.23bn for construction and commissioning, and another R4.231bn for the GMA, land, bidding and support costs. Of that R30.462bn, a total of R27.298bn comes from the government, R3.16bn from private funding and another R2 million is ‘other private funding’.
“The Star reported earlier that an engineer’s plan to sort out the water tunnel problems between Park station and Rosebank could take 10 months and cost R100m to fix.”

According to MEC for transport Ismail Vadi, the final leg, from Rosebank to the Joburg CBD, is not expected to open for months. “Water ingress in the Rosebank to Park station tunnel is a material issue for the certification of the entire Gautrain system,” the Star quoted him saying. “The Bombela contractors will now spend the next few months drilling small
holes into the tunnel floor and injecting grouting into the tunnel rocks, which is expected to reduce the water seepage.

“Vadi said this was a slow process and predicting a completion date was difficult. It was hoped the link would open by the end of the year. The report makes it clear that the company in charge of building and operating the train knew there would be a delay in opening the second phase of the project.”

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