London Underground has been told it may have to de-scope the works to be carried out by Public-Private Partnership tube upgrade contractor Tube Lines over the next seven-and-a -half years.
Having set the price of the work at £4.46 billion in March, PPP Arbiter Chris Bolt has now deemed that LU is currently unable to afford it.
It now has until 14 May to prove it can afford the work in full or it must de-scope the programme of works, which is due to start in July, on the Northern, Piccadilly and Jubilee lines.
Mr Bolt was due to deliver his final directions on the long running funding dispute between LU and Tube Lines but has now deferred his decision until 30 June.
Tube Lines acting chief executive Andrew Cleaves said: “The Arbiter has made a sensible decision today by calling on LU to cut its cloth according to its budget and only ask for what it can afford, or alternatively demonstrate once and for all that it can actually afford the work it has asked for. These are tough times for everyone and it is vital that LU does not commit to an investment programme it cannot fund with any certainty.
Mr Bolt set the final costs for tube upgrade contractor Tube Lines’ next control period at £4.46 billion - £460 million above London Underground’s estimate.
The final determination was a £65m increase on his draft costs published in December.
The arbiter’s final directions compare with Tube Lines’ most recent bid of £5.75bn and London Underground’s valuation of £4bn.