Council blamed for metro fiasco

A report into cost overruns and delays on the construction of Amsterdam’s north-south metro line blames the council for mismanagement of the project.

The report, by Amsterdam ombudsman Ulco van de Pol, says Tjeerd Herrema, the council executive in charge, had no idea what was going on and there was a complete lack of communication between council departments involved in the project.
The north-south agency, which was set up to oversee the project, did not involve Herrema in the construction stop between June and September 2008 following subsidence along the city’s Vijzelgracht. He did not know the agency was planning to continue digging again in July before the cause of the subsidence was known.
Herrema left his job in February 2009 saying he had done his best. But the report says neither he nor his second-in-command Maarten van Poelgeest had acquitted themselves well.
The cost of the north-south metro line has now gone up from its original €1.4bn to €2.4bn. It will not be ready until 2017, two years later than the last target date.
Herrema has been replaced on the project on an interim basis by Van Poelgeest

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