MSP calls for end to money squab­ble

The Press and Journal (Moray) - - NEWS - BY TOM PETERKIN PO­LIT­I­CAL ED­I­TOR

Aberdeen by­pass con­trac­tors have been urged to stop “squab­bling” over money amid re­ports they are at­tempt­ing to claim £350 mil­lion from the Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment.

North East MSP Lewis Mac­don­ald said Aberdeen Roads Ltd and the gov­ern­ment must stop ar­gu­ing and con­cen­trate on fin­ish­ing the road.

The con­trac­tors Aberdeen Roads Ltd (ARL) this week told MSPs that they had lost “hun­dreds of mil­lions” on the pro­ject which now had a to­tal cost of £1 bil­lion.

De­spite the pro­ject hav­ing a fixed con­tract of £745m, the con­trac­tors are de­mand­ing com­pen­sa­tion from Trans­port Scot­land.

Yesterday, it was re­ported that ARL was seek­ing an ad­di­tional £350m.

Mr Mac­don­ald said: “The con­trac­tors and the Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment must fo­cus on get­ting the job fin­ished first.

“When the road is fi­nally open, there will be ques­tions for both the con­trac­tors and the Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment, about both the costs of the pro­ject and the con­tract min­is­ters put in place.”

A Trans­port Scot­land spokesper­son said the AWPR cost re­mained £745m and ARL went into the pro­ject with “eyes open”.

“The Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment is not will­ing to pay over the odds for the road on ac­count of mis­takes or mis­cal­cu­la­tions that are of the con­trac­tors’ mak­ing,” he added.

Mean­while, thou­sands of homes in Aberdeen had to go with­out wa­ter for hours on Wed­nes­day af­ter a pipe de­vel­oped an 18in crack due to work on the by­pass.

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