Wednesday, 6 December 2017

Fact of the Day: Over HK$16B in Cost Overruns

The Sha Tin to Central rail link is still being built and going to cost much more
Hong Kong's taxpayers are reeling from the total cost of the MTR rail link being built between Sha Tin and Central, as it will cost a whopping HK$87.32 billion, making it the most expensive in the city's history.

The 17 kilometre cross-harbour rail line is HK$16.5 billion above the original HK$70.82 billion budget, and when it's finally completed, it could cost more than HK$97 billion.

The link that will be shown later on the MTR map
An MTR Corporation source denied there was a miscalculation regarding the overrun, saying it was caused by numerous factors, including unfavourable ground conditions, and the requirement for additional work.

"Engineers are not God. They can't predict everything," the source said. "The complexity of the underground work is not something that can be fully controlled."

The unforeseen extra costs include preserving heritage sites uncovered near the new Sung Wong Toi station, labour shortages, poor ground conditions and design tweaks, like the need for more bridges and elevators.

Doesn't sound like the project was well thought out from the beginning...

Artifacts dug up added to unforeseen costs of the link
Jeremy Tam Man-ho of the Civic Party criticized the government for its failure to foresee that the city had insufficient manpower to handle its multiple ongoing large-scale infrastructure projects, resulting in surging labour costs as firms tried to lure workers.

This is what happens when bureaucrats have no clue of the economic pressures in Hong Kong and think throwing money at problems will solve them. When it's said and done, this 20-minute ride into town better be worth its weight in gold.

1 comment:

  1. Ever since the handover, the MTR is forced to use PRC Chinese parts, systems and even engineering wonder since the handover MTR is becoming a joke and moreover, constant breakdowns and safety concerns.

    With high speed rail coming to HK, deadly accidents tragedies like those in the PRC will occur in HK.