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New Nato headquarters could run to €1 billion

11:35 03/12/2014

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 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

Written by Alan Hope



On the NATO website, a spokes woman says....." we have every faith in the ability of our host Nation, Belgium, to manage this project".

What planet are these people from?!

It's odd though, at a time of austerity and when we are all supposed to be watching the purse strings, that the pen pushers seem to have no problem finding funds for new chrome and marble palaces for themselves.

Thinking that Overijse, Hoeilaart, Tervuren and I'm sure some others all managed to find the funds in very recent years for nice new prestigious office blocks for their commune workers.

Dec 3, 2014 12:09

@Mikek1 and friends -- Is there a "Planet Nag" people never heard of, somewhere? There certainly seems to be one now... and it is full of sour grapes. So better watch your step, folks, Big Brother is watching you!

Dec 4, 2014 10:19

I do know one thing....Those that work for these places, NATO, SHAPE, EU commission etc etc do seem to like to dismiss observations about the generous spending on them, their generous taxation arrangements etc etc as "sour grapes".

No chance of genuine and justified anger?

Dec 4, 2014 13:04