Dundee councillors approve new £80m V&A project budget

Councillors in Dundee have approved a revised £80m budget for the city’s flagship V&A museum project.

City development director Mike Galloway and chief executive David Martin have now been handed formal responsibility for the development following a 90-minute meeting where councillors unanimously agreed to delegate authority and accept the £76.16m tender submitted by contractors BAM Construction.

v-a-dundee-waterfront night

An independent investigation into the cost of the project was also agreed, to be chaired by former Rangers football club chairman John McClelland.

Building work could start in March.

There had been calls for an inquiry after the cost of the project almost doubled from its original price of £45m.

The council’s policy and resources committee agreed a new funding strategy to deliver construction of the design museum, which includes £6.5m from the authority’s capital budget.

The Scottish government has already pledged an additional £10m, and bosses at the Heritage Lottery Fund are to meet later to discuss contributing an extra £4.5m.

Construction work at the museum’s waterfront site needs to begin by the end of March to avoid a six-month delay due to the seal pup season on the Tay.

If work gets under way on schedule, the building, designed by Japanese architect Kengo Kuma following an international competition, could be completed by the end of 2017.

It would then open to visitors in the summer of 2018, and officials say it could net the city an economic benefit of more than £11m a year thereafter.

Mr Martin had promised a “comprehensive review” of the project’s spiralling costs.

Mr McClelland, recognised as an expert on public procurement and supply chain operations, was appointed to lead the probe having previously conducted reviews of public sector procurement for the Scottish government and the Welsh Assembly.

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