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Company sued by Metro Vancouver a preferred bidder for Surrey Langley SkyTrain project

Click to play video: 'ACCIONA wins Surrey SkyTrain extension project'
ACCIONA wins Surrey SkyTrain extension project
One of the companies awarded a contract to build the new Surrey SkyTrain stations is a division of the same company being sued for huge cost overruns on another major Metro Vancouver infrastructure project, the North Shore wastewater treatment plant. As Julia Foy reports, these are not the only local civic projects ACCIONA is involved in. – Apr 13, 2024

The province has selected a preferred bidder to build the stations for the Surrey Langley SkyTrain extension and it includes a company being sued by Metro Vancouver for hundreds of millions of dollars.

Major construction of the 16-kilometre line is expected to start this year.

The preferred bidder is a group of companies including ACCIONA Infrastructure Canada.

This company and Metro Vancouver are in court over the troubled North Shore Wastewater Treatment Plant, accusing each other of major failures leading to the project being billions over budget and years behind schedule.

The new $3.86-billion price tag is up from the last estimate of $1 billion as of 2022 and nearly eight times the initial projection of $500 million. The regional district is forecasting the plant will be “substantially complete” by 2030 with “minor connecting works” in the following years.

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The partially completed plant at 1311 West 1st St. in North Vancouver will eventually serve communities on the North Shore and replace the aging 1961 plant located beneath the Lions Gate Bridge.

Click to play video: 'New station names unveiled for Surrey Langley SkyTrain extension'
New station names unveiled for Surrey Langley SkyTrain extension

In 2021, Metro Vancouver terminated the construction contract with Acciona Wastewater Solutions LP, claiming the company appeared to have “abandoned” the project and citing delays and skyrocketing costs.

Under the original terms of a public-private partnership, the company was to design, build, and partially finance the plant at a cost of $500 million and with a completion date of 2021.

ACCIONA sued the regional district for nearly $300 million in 2022, claiming Metro Vancouver had provided an unsuitable site and “conflicting and error-ridden” construction specifications resulting in necessary mid-build changes.

Metro Vancouver later took court action of its own, alleging a confidential report — which included legal advice about the decision to cancel the contract and future litigation — was leaked to the company.

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None of the claims have been proven in court.

Click to play video: 'Court documents shed light on wastewater treatment plant dispute'
Court documents shed light on wastewater treatment plant dispute

— with files from Simon Little

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