Godsend delay

Paulo Coutinho

Paulo Coutinho

Some newsman once said – and I like to quote – there is no good or bad news, just news. Well, to every rule there are exceptions. Take this one for example:
The HKD133 billion bridge linking Hong Kong, Macau and Zhuhai will miss its 2016 deadline by a year, the Hong Kong government announced this week.
According to the HK gov’t statement, “T he bridge’s completion will be pushed back until the end of 2017 because of the instability of material supply and shortages of labor, as well as dealing with aviation height limits, environmental protection requirements and slower than expected progress in land reclamation.”
The news blowing from the other side of the delta was received with great relief by authorities on this margin of the pearly, corrupted waters.
Especially, I believe, at the office of the Secretary for Transport and Public Works.
Mr Raimundo do Rosário told the media last week that the administration expects to launch a new tender to continue the much delayed construction of the Light Rail Transit (LRT) depot “as early as the second quarter of next year.”
“Long locked in a stalemate with the company leading the project’s construction over the specifics of the contract, the authorities have finally reached agreement after two years of negotiations, and have decided to call for a new contractor to undertake the construction,” Macau Daily Times reported earlier this week, quoting Rosário.
Without surprise we heard that “the delays in the construction of the depot resulted in a stagnation of the first phase of the citywide transit system for over one year.” You can say that again.
Civil engineers told the Times over Thanksgiving that if all goes well, we are talking four years until the depot is ready to function. By that time the infrastructure of the LRT system will be rotting already. That’s planning!
Though Rosário may not be the one to blame for this, the fact of the matter is that every small delay on the grandiose Y-Bridge will be more than welcome because the city isn’t ready for all that jazz. Not now, and probably not in five years’ time.


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Categories Editorial Macau