The anticipated cost of the planned M4 Relief road has almost doubled before the inquiry into it concludes.
Responding to comments made by a Welsh Government official regarding the cost of the M4 Relief Road, Welsh Conservative Shadow Secretary for Economy and Infrastructure, Russell George AM, said, “Only two years ago the First Minister said the M4 Relief Road would cost the Welsh Labour Government around £800m, however, this looks set to nearly double without a single inch of tarmac being laid.
“This latest estimate shows we have a government in chaos, with a startling inability to manage large infrastructure projects.
“It’s time Carwyn Jones and the Welsh Government got a grip on this situation before further costs are incurred by Welsh taxpayers and motorists who experience gridlock on the M4 a daily basis.”
Just over two years ago, First Minister Carwyn Jones said the scheme would cost “nowhere near £1 Billion”.
Simon Jones, Welsh Government’s director of economic infrastructure, told AMs, “The figure that has been lodged with the inquiry is between £1.3-£1.4bn,”
“The VAT situation is quite complex with that road. It applies to some parts of the scheme and not to others.” Pressed on whether the cost would be more than £1.4bn after VAT, Mr Jones replied,”Yes.”
Welsh Government favours a controversial ‘black route’ for the new road extending from Magor to Caselton, Cardiff and travelling over the Newport Docks and wetlands to the west of the city with the intention of bypassing the M4 twin tunnels at Brynglas. An inquiry into the plan is ongoing.