Massive Zwolle test centre cost taxpayers €2m, but was never used

Coronavirus testing centre in Amsterdam. Photo:
A Coronavirus testing centre in Amsterdam. Photo:

The government has spent €2m on a massive coronavirus test location in Zwolle which has never been used, local broadcaster RTV Oost said on Wednesday.

The so called XL test centre was established in marquees next to the IJsselhallen sports centre in Zwolle at the beginning of June and dismantled at the end of August. It was never open during the period, the broadcaster said.

The €2m price tag includes the construction and dismantling, a spokesman told RTV Oost, as well as furnishing, ICT, location rent, sewerage, fuel, insulation, the 54 test places and rest areas for the crew.

The centre had capacity to carry out 25,000 tests a day under the ‘test for entry’ scheme but was left unused after the number of coronavirus cases surged and the government reversed its decision to open cafes and allow festivals to take place.

The company given the contract to run the centre has also reached agreement with the health ministry on costs that it has incurred, for example to cover the recruitment of staff, the broadcaster said.

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