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Waterfront Toronto close to 40 per cent over budget on Queen's Quay construction

12/11/2014 04:56 EST | Updated 02/10/2015 05:59 EST
Waterfront Toronto is reporting its Queens Quay Revitalization is more than $35 million over budget.

The taxpayer-supported organization approved a nearly 40 per cent cost overrun in February, but is only disclosing the information now.

The organization says it encountered "a series of unforeseeable obstacles and issues" with construction starting in December 2013, adding new expenses.

During the digging up of the roadway, Waterfront construction crews have encountered more than 100 different unexpected finds, such as:

- Unidentified pipes

- Abandoned dockwalls

- Unconnected storm sewer pipes

- Abandoned manholes

- Conflicts with Hydro infrastructure

- Sinkholes

- Water main failure

- Conflicting street pole footings, drilled into the ground

Private contracts still unsettled 

The estimated increase for the Queen's Quay Revitalization project is from a quote of $93.2 million in 2011 to the current $128.9 million — a 38.3 per cent increase.

"Disclosing sooner risked costing more public money," tweeted the organization in response to questions about the timing of the information's release. It says it had "commercially sensitive negotiations" with private contractors that needed to be settled before its cost overruns could be made public.

However, there are still contracts that have not been settled with private companies.

Despite the overruns, Waterfront Toronto claims it "will require no additional funding requests" and that government contributions to the project "will remain unchanged."

However, the organization cannot say how much the final project will cost. 

The project is still due to be completed before the Pan Am Games, says the organization.

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