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Mayor demands review to settle Tube PPP overspend

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MAYOR OF London Ken Livingstone has called for an extraordinary review to settle who pays for the £750M overspend by tube operator Metronet.

Metronet, which operates three-quarters of London's Tube, said that Transport for London should pay for the overspend, highlighted by the public/private partnership (PPP) arbiter last year (NCE 9 November 2006).

'Metronet's performance in the maintenance and renewal of two-thirds of the Tube network must improve, ' said the Mayor. 'He [the PPP arbiter] is the only person to decide how much of the cost overrun must be borne by the Metronet shareholders - Atkins, Balfour Beatty, Bombardier, EDF Energy and Thames Water.' Metronet, which has the power to call for the review, said: 'We are working hard to achieve a commercial settlement with London Underground, but should there be no positive outcome, we shall pursue the 'extraordinary review' route to recover the money due to us.'

Liberal Democrat transport spokesperson for the London Assembly Geoff Pope, said: 'A review will at least get everything out into the open so we can see who is to blame and who is not.

'It will certainly involve both sides in high legal costs and may even cause further delays.'

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