Stuck in the swamp: why is stalling the construction of the stadium in Kaliningrad

The construction of the Stadium in Kaliningrad for the matches of the world Cup in 2018

Enough sleep sand

For the first time about the problems with the construction of the stadium in Kaliningrad it became known a month and a half ago: on may 8 the Minister of sport Vitaly Mutko said that there is a problem with the earth, without revealing details. June 1 FIFA President Danny Infantino said that the construction in Kaliningrad have questions, “but if you work hard, and Russian because a nation that can do it, we do it on time” (quoted by “RIA Novosti”).

Stadium in Kaliningrad will be built in the city centre, on the island of October. The contractor, the government chose in 2013 Crocus International Aras Agalarov, who built the far Eastern University on the Russian island for the APEC summit in 2013. The value of the contract to the stadium about 18.5 billion rubles. Formal customer of construction was assigned to the FSUE “Sport-Engineering”, subordinated to the Ministry of sports.

October the island is situated between two rivers the Old and the New Pregolya. In 2014, the head of the organizing Committee “Russia-2018” Alexei Sorokin said that the October “has properties flooded”. About possible problems in 2012, warned the President of the regional Council of deputies of Kaliningrad Alexander Patico. According to him, the island is not suitable for building and for a large object will have to spend a lot of money on the strengthening of the soil.

In 2014, the Federal government, the regional authorities and the organizing Committee “Russia-2018” discussed the change project. With the agreement of FIFA, the capacity was reduced from 45 thousand to 35 thousand places, however, the place decided not to change. Crocus International began designing the stadium in 2015 agreed with the state examination, and in the beginning of 2016 construction began.

A week ago, Agalarov told RBC that may not begin construction of associated infrastructure (offices, security checkpoints, Parking lots, etc.) around the stadium and the field itself. The reason poor quality of the soil. According to Agalarov, the authorities of the Kaliningrad region poorly developed area covered it is not a six-meter layer of sand and loam with the thickness 3-3,5 m.

Federal official admits problems with the quality of the soil. He explains that site preparation can be further spent about 300 million rubles is Now resolved who will bear these costs. The examination should determine whether the plot is really poorly prepared, and then the costs will fall on the Kaliningrad oblast, or the problems of building the fault of the contractor, then the additional expenses incurred by the “Crocus Group”.

The search for the culprit

Position Agalarov the Kaliningrad region needs to prepare the construction site. “I offer them extra to cover the territory, roughly speaking, 400 million cubic meters of sand, and give us a small amount of piling under field and network engineering, but they refuse,” said Agalarov.

However, the authorities of the region do not consider themselves guilty. In 2013, they signed a contract with the company Globalelektroservis engineering site preparation for the stadium. The cost of the work amounted to 850 million rubles, which were allocated from the Federal budget. Employee of the government of the Kaliningrad region explains that Globalelektroservis engineering work conducted under the project of the stadium for 45 thousand seats. “Then the Federal government was the decision to reduce capacity. Only contractor and designer under the new terms of reference were defined “Crocus”. There was clearly stated that they are doing the engineering preparation for a new project,” said the interlocutor of RBC.

The press service of the regional government in response to a request to RBC sent the Director of the regional Department of the customer of capital construction of the Kaliningrad region Sergey Chernomaz. From his words it follows that the authorities of the region are not party to the contract, and from FGUP “Sports-Engineering” claims to the land were reported. About the same a week ago, said Vice-Premier of Kaliningrad Alexander Rolbinov: “the Customer of the construction of the stadium is the “Sport-Engineering”. <…> “Krokus” he was preparing the project and it builds itself. So the question for themselves” (quoted by “Interfax”).

In the “Sport-Engineering” and the Ministry of sports refused to comment. The representative of “Globalelektroservis” says complaints from the customer upon acceptance of the site was not the company considers the contract fulfilled.

Until the time

In Kaliningrad have to go through five matches in the group stage of the world Cup. The Federal official says that the problems with the stadium in Kaliningrad will be resolved soon, perhaps as early as this week. According to him, there is no critical gap no. “It’s a working situation. Similar happened in Sochi and the 2012 APEC summit”, said the interlocutor of RBC.

Agalarov promises that the stadium will be ready by the end of 2017. As well as another arena in Rostov, which Crocus International is building for the 2018 world Cup. Construction in Rostov started a year earlier than in Kaliningrad. The same timing of completion Agalarov explains different construction techniques: “Kaliningrad frame, and in Rostov-na-Donu concrete. Metal provides higher speed of construction, as we get ready metal products”.

Stadium in Kaliningrad was originally a problem long coordinated the project, discussed the possible change of the place of construction, says a former Federal official. “When the project is being prepared in the fire regime, problems with its construction inevitable,” said the interlocutor of RBC. But he is also confident that the stadium will be ready for the championship.