The State Opposition has called for the Government to provide evidence of contractual disputes that have forced the new Perth Stadium footbridge to be constructed locally.
The problem-plagued pedestrian bridge was due to be completed late last year but was delayed when its Malaysian manufacturer failed to meet delivery timelines.
That sub-contract has now been terminated and today Premier Mark McGowan announced the bridge’s steel deck and arch components would be built in WA, blowing out the cost of the project by another $13 million.
“We have the capacity, we have the workforce, we have the fabricators, we have the ability,” Mr McGowan said.
“Obviously it’s going to cost more to do it this way, but that’s unavoidable.”
But Deputy Opposition Leader Liza Harvey called for a better explanation, saying when the Liberal National Party was in government, things were progressing well.
“At the time of the election the bridge was 75 per cent complete,” Ms Harvey said.
“The State Government, in taking the reins, has been interfering in the process and now we’re looking at $13 million extra as a bill to the taxpayers.
“The Government needs to provide evidence to the community of those contractual disputes being the cause of this delay.
“They’ve been in Government for three months and this is the first we’ve heard of it? I actually find that to be somewhat concerning.”
But the State Government claims both sides of politics were made aware of the legal disputes with the Malaysian manufacturer in January, before the March election.
It says the bridge is now due to be completed by mid-March 2018, but it concedes that could be a tight timeframe to meet.
It anticipated 250 jobs would be created by fabricating the project locally.