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Olympic decision making in limbo say consultants

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DECISION MAKING at the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) has fallen into a state of limbo following its appointment of the CLM consortium as delivery partner last month, consultants told NCE this week.

The process of ironing out details of the relationship with CLM - a consortium of CH2M Hill, Laing O'Rourke and Mace - had, they warned, left no clear leadership on Olympic projects already underway.

'We have been introduced to the delivery partner but there are no lines of engagement, ' said a senior member of one of the ODA's design teams.

'No rules have been identied, ' he added.

'ODA staff themselves are as yet unsure as to the operating mandate that CLM has.' The ODA accepted that the relationship details were still being alised but denied the process was creating problems.

A spokeswoman claimed it was business as usual until the ODA was ready to announce exactly how the relationship between itself and CLM will work.

'There are project sponsors within ODA who are responsible for particular areas. While discussions [with CLM] are ongoing, all decisions will be made by the ODA, ' she said.

'The ODA is in ultimate, overall charge of all projects.' But concern over the decision making process appears to be growing.

Another source complained that 'the ODA's left hand doesn't know what the right hand's doing'.

He described as 'disappointing' the fact that the ODA and CLM were unable to explain their relationship, pointing out that as a result they were still waiting to have meetings to resolve various issues.

'The issues we have aren't particularly pressing at the moment.

We can carry on regardless, ' he said.

'But the problem is that because the ODA's staff don't know what their remit is, they are not making decisions. If we were to make a proposal they may be unable to act on it.' Other consultants also expressed fears that delays in con ming the relationship between the ODA and CLM could impact the timetable for deciding on the forms of procurement to be used for construction.

'The decision on whether the ODA will be using traditional tenders, negotiation, design and build. . . It's not critical now but will become so within three to six months, ' said a potential bidder.

The Office of Government Commerce has funded a review of the ODA's use of competitive dialogue during tendering for the 2012 delivery partner role.

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