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Midland Met delays to cost more than £400m

The NHS trust responsible for the Midland Metropolitan Hospital has admitted the project could cost an extra £400m, with the scheme’s opening delayed until 2022.

In a report prepared ahead of a Sandwell and West Birmingham NHS Trust board meeting, its chief executive Toby Lewis said that the extra costs include work to keep the current hospital open into the next decade as a contingency plan following the delays.

The new figure is £100m higher than the cost estimates from October.

Balfour Beatty was named as interim contractor on the stalled hospital in October with remedial works and weatherproofing of the structure expected to take six months.

The site has deteriorated since work stopped in January due to the collapse of main contractor Carillion.

The appointment of a new contractor is expected to be decided in early 2019 with full work recommencing in summer next year.

The financial strength of any bidders is expected to be scrutinised as part of any procurement offer being made.

The report said: “Balfour Beatty is making good progress with the interim works.

“The final contractor will be selected by open competition, and in parallel, we will select a facilities management provider to undertake maintenance work to keep the hospital to the standard we would all want.

“More than £400m will be spent on completion and enabling works to keep [the current hospital] working until 2022.”

In August the government confirmed it would directly fund the completion of the hospital, the cost of which was estimated at £300m.

This is on top of the £205m already spent up to January when Carillion collapsed and work stopped.

A financial report for September, included with the board papers, revealed that the total capital cost of the early works programme was estimated to be £25m.

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