Less than a third of construction work on the Sha Tin-Central Link has been completed, pushing back its launch by at least a year, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reported Thursday.
The delay is being blamed on unstable soil conditions along the construction corridors and an ongoing heritage preservation work.
The Tai Wai-Hung Hom section will not be completed until 2019 and the link to Admiralty will be delayed to 2021, the report said, citing a government submission to the Legislative Council.
MTR Corp. Ltd. (00066.HK), which operates Hong Kong’s railway monopoly, set the launch of the two sections by the end of 2018 and 2020, respectively, under an agreement with the government.
The government faces added costs of up to HK$4.1 billion (US$528.7 million) because of the delay in the Tai Wai-Hung Hom line alone, according to the submission.
Meanwhile, the Hong Kong section of the national high-speed rail system is also running behind schedule, with only 66 percent of the work completed.
The delay will add HK$6.5 billion to its overall cost, the report said.
Wong Kwok-hing, vice chairman of the Legco railway sub-committee, said the government should claim damages and hold MTR Corp. accountable for the delays.
Translation by Vey Wong
– Contact us at [email protected]