Friday, December 21, 2007
"We are told a new Forth bridge will cost between £3.2 and £4.2 billion (your report, 20 December). Back when the estimate was £2.5 billion (in June) I thought it was high. The previous road bridge cost £19.5 million, which converts today to £314 million. Why have costs, after inflation, gone up ten to 13 times? It would seem amazing if this was purely government regulations, but the alternative would seem more sinister.
A third crossing was initially sold on the threat that the current bridge was about to fall down because the cables were ageing. However, it seems ever more likely that it can be reroped at a cost of about £10 million. This is, after all, what the rest of the world does. Anybody want to bet on whether, as soon as all the expensive contracts have been signed, we will be told that reroping can proceed apace?
This was a short letter & greatly understates the problem since the real way to provide a crossing is by a tunnel, which, if we did it at the same cost as Norway manages, would set us back about £40 million - 1% of what we are being charged for this.
Here is a reply I put up on the Herald online expanding on this & refering to previous articles I have done on the subject.
I have discussed this on my blog & my articles contain further links to various costings so I will refer you to
Costings of previous bridges & Norwegian tunnels
My FoI enquiry into how the tunnel was costed
Herald discussion yesterday ending with a Scot living in Norway calling our costings "criminal"
Proposal for a Scottish tunnel Project across Scotland similar to Norway's, which should cost far less than this one bridge
9% Growth Party Press release yesterday