Mayor: Two more years for Metro 4
Despite cost overruns and deep financial crisis at BKV, Tarlós says "extraordinary measures" taken by the city could see fourth metro line opening by spring 2014.
A 2010 photo featuring an unfinished section of the Metro 4 near Bocskai út in District XI.
The construction of Budapest's fourth metro line could be ready by spring 2014, and the city's leaders have taken extraordinary measures in recent weeks to make this possible, Budapest Mayor Istvan Tarlos told daily Magyar Nemzet in an interview published on Monday.
The project's cost has inflated to almost 400 billion forints (EUR 1.3bn) due to "scandalous" contracts signed in the period of the previous government, Tarlos said.
According to the official website of the 4th metro, work on the M4 Project to connect the southwest of the capital in Buda to the northeast in Pest reached 70 percent completion in December 2011, including tunnelling and station boxes. The foundation stone was laid in March 2006
A new management has since been appointment to the DBR Metro Project directorate operating under the Budapest transport company (BKV), he added.
Tarlos said the biggest problem was that instead of using a general contractor for the project, as is usual around the world, contracts were signed with a total of 17 subcontractors in 2005 and 2006.
Tarlos referred to a "mind-boggling" contract signed with Siemens in connection with metro trains. Even though a legal dispute with the train supplier French company Alstom has been resolved, Siemens was unable to start the installation of electric and safety devices in time and is now demanding several tens of billion forints of compensation based on a contract signed by the former city leaders who belonged to the Socialists and the Alliance of Free Democrats, he said.
The mayor's office has recently submitted a report to the prosecutor's office in connection with contracts signed with subcontractors because the payment of European Union subsidies totalling 181 billion forints, needed for the metro project to be completed, is now endangered due to these contracts, he added.