More cost and delay to much needed new Liverpool Hospital
The Royal Liverpool and Broadgreen University Hospitals NHS Trust has confirmed that the hospital which had been originally scheduled to open early in 2017 will now not open until 2022.
The repair & remediation cost have also significantly increased to nearly £600m at the troubled site
In January 2018 when construction giant Carillion went bust with debts of £1.5bn the construction work ceased, only 3 years after it began.
The site which has had numerous setbacks and delays throughout its construction, when in Feb 2016 just two years into development Carillion confirmed the job was actually six months behind its original schedule.
Work was temporarily halted again December 2016 due to the discovery of a cracked beam. More delays followed in March 2017 with the opening pushed into the Summer 2018.
In June 2017 concerns were raised over the building’s cladding, following the Grenfell Tower tragedy. Then, in December, shortly before Carillion’s collapse, the opening date was moved back indefinitely.
Further structural problems were discovered, but in November 2018 builder Laing O’Rourke was appointed to rectify the various issues at the site.
In June this year Liverpool Mayor Joe Anderson called for a public inquiry into the scheme after further defects were found.
And this week, hospital chief executive Steve Warburton said work will not be complete until 2022, and the costs are now expected to be £300m. This is on top of the £285m already spent on the building.
Mr Warburton said: “In simple terms, there are a whole series of structural failures and then cladding failures as well.
“It will take a huge amount of work to replace that cladding.”
Following news of the latest delay staff have removed some equipment already installed in the new hospital, to the old Royal so staff there can use it.
Mr Warburton said the trust is still finalising its business case for the extra work, which is expected to be ready in February.
The Government has said that it would meet the additional cost extra costs, and Mr Warburton said he expects that to still be the case.
Now, the trust is considering whether to take legal action over the catastrophic programme.
Unite the Union regional officer Derek Jones said: “The public and the Royal’s workforce have been completely let down by the Government’s abject failure to get to grips with the Carillion disaster and its aftermath.
“The Government appointed Carillion to build the hospital, neglected to monitor the project’s progress and failed to ensure there was no delay in getting it built once the firm went under.
“Because of this, staff and patients will now have to spend three more Winters in a building that is not fit for purpose.
“The Royal is completely unsuited to meeting the needs of patients, who only continue to receive excellent care because the hospital’s exemplary staff manage to find ways to work around the crumbling infrastructure.”