In a move committed to making its spending more transparent, Transport for London has published the final cost for the undelivered Garden Bridge project in London, UK.
In November 2015, the Garden Bridge Trust was made completely responsible for the construction of the project, and it spent a total of almost £53.5 million (€60.87 million) on the venture.
In July 2015, Mayor of London at the time Boris Johnson made up to £60 million (€68.29 million) available to the Trust. The money was to be taken equally from Transport for London (TfL) and the UK Department for Transport (DfT), both paying in £30 million (€34.14 million).
In May 2016, the Secretary of State for Transport at the time agreed that for a limited period of four months, up to £15 million (€17.06 million) of the remaining balance of public funding would be available to cover costs related to the shutdown of the project, were it not to continue.
The government extended this agreement though the approved funding was not to exceed £9 million (€10.23 million), with funding to be taken only from DfT’s portion. This matter was decided after the current Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said that TfL would not be contributing funding towards this agreement.
The Bridge design was scrapped in August 2017 and the financial administrator for the public sector funding, TfL, has reviewed the trust’s payment requests to ensure that all costs to the public purse are justified. The figure that has been approved as payable to the trust is £5.5 million (€6.25 million) and is to be paid from the DfT funding.
The final public sector spend is around £43 million (€48.86 million) – split between £24 million (€27.28 million) from TfL and £19 million (€21.58 million) from the DfT.
The trust now has 120 days in which it can request £500,000 (€567,528) of additional funding, subject to approval from FtL.