The extension of the controversial Edinburgh tram line to Newhaven is now expected to cost more than £200m.
BBC Reports that the cost of extending Edinburgh’s controversial tram scheme has jumped by 25% to £207m.
Edinburgh City Council is considering lengthening the tram line by 2.8 miles (4.6km) from the city centre to Newhaven.
It was initially estimated this would cost £165m but a final business case for the project now states it will be £207m, including a contingency fund.
A final decision on the extension will be made next month.
If the extension is approved by councillors, the works should be completed by 2022 and operational in the first quarter of 2023.
‘The transport system must evolve to cater to a rapidly growing population’
Council leader Adam McVey said: “We need to invest in our capital city’s continued success and deal with the growth of our population in a sustainable way.
“Edinburgh has a fantastic public transport network but we need to extend tram to build on our first-class, fully-integrated transport system.
“As Scotland’s fastest growing city, things simply cannot continue as they are – the transport system must evolve to cater to a rapidly growing population.
“The FBC before us now is the result of a huge amount of work by the project team to produce a strong business case for taking trams to Newhaven which – crucially – does not divert funding from other council services.”
Although the details of the final business case are not being revealed to the public until it is considered by the council’s transport committee on 28 February, the council has said it can be built within a budget of £196m – an increase from the initial £165m estimation.
However, councillors will be asked to approve an overall budget of £207m to include a recommended 6% level of “optimism bias” to take account of an increased risk buffer for any problems encountered.
The delayed original tram line was opened in 2014 and cost £776m for a shortened route – more than double the original budget.