Errors That Cost Millions

Because of flaws in the estimates of costs of the work, in Costa Rica the Comptroller's Office declared unviable the tender to build a sports center, supposedly valued at $40 million.

Friday, March 1, 2019

In July 2016, the Solis administration announced explicitly that they were preparing to tender, at the beginning of 2017, the construction of a 25,000 square meter aquatic center and a 36,000 square meter sports center in San José, for a total cost of $40 million.

In the case of the aquatic center, no consideration was given to the possible impact on the infrastructure of chlorinated water in the swimming pools, so the initiative did not even reach the tender stage.

In the case of the sports center project, known as the Pabellón Deportivo en el Parque de la Paz (Sports Pavilion in the Peace Park), the problem began because of a poor calculation of costs based on advice provided by experts from the University of Costa Rica (UCR), who had determined that $15 million could be used to build the work, when its real cost exceeded $30 million.

Crhoy.com reports that because of the differences between the estimated costs and the real ones, the company Rapiparedes decided to present a proposal that consisted of "... making the project not for the $30 million it would cost, but for the original $15 million, changing some works and leaving aside the aesthetic part, so that it would be a partial award."

However, the Comptroller's Office did not agree, stating that "...  The Project Executing Unit proposes the possibility of partially awarding the project, but the proposal made becomes unfeasible since it changes the object of the tender by reducing the original number of modules established for sports disciplines from 8 to 7 modules, forcing two massive disciplines to share a module, and doubling the national counterpart provided by ICODER, which originally amounted to $2,000,000, and was intended for the sports equipment of this project, reducing this equipment to a minimum, eliminating special floors for each discipline, as well as cutting costs in bathrooms, bleachers, floating ceilings and roofs that would communicate the modules, among others and that the UEP determined that these were aesthetic issues that, however, are functional for the public that, according to the model of self-sustainable management that was proposed, are extremely important for the maintenance of the project, making it unfeasible and rejecting the possibility of partial adjudication of the project.”

In this way, the tender through which the Pabellón Deportivo was intended to be built was definitively declared unsuccessful, according to the resolution of February 11.

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