New NATO headquarters could run €1 billion

Summary

The new NATO headquarters in Brussels is behind schedule and over budget, says the Court of Auditors

Funded by member states

The new headquarters of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO), currently under construction in Brussels, could see its costs run as high as €1 billion, the Court of Auditors has warned. The original budget for the complex was €457.6 million.

According to the report, the cost has already gone up to €710.4 million, including €23.4 million overspending on the construction of the building, €17 million on electronic security, €26 million on audio-visual infrastructure and €62 million on network infrastructure.

Costs to come in 2015 include interiors and furnishings worth €64 million, as well as another €62 million for network infrastructure. The 28 member states of the organisation have placed a ceiling of €1 billion on the project, which they are financing collectively.

Part of the extra cost comes from a €240 million damages claim filed by the BAM Alliance, the main contractor, for problems, including the severe winter of 2012-2013, for changes to the original plans and for “a failure of management by the contracting authority”, which is the Belgian state.

Construction of the new HQ started in 2010 and is planned to be completed in 2016. The complex is located on a former Belgian military base opposite the existing HQ. It will provide space for 28 embassies of the member states, 1,550 national delegates, 1,700 international staff, 800 staff from NATO agencies and about 500 visitors a day.

Photo courtesy SOM + Assar architects

The new NATO headquarters in Brussels is behind schedule and over budget, says the Court of Auditors.

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