This is an increase of NOK 4.2 billion. Now, the Minister of Local Government and Modernization, Nikolai Astrup (H), says that he has the ambition to reduce the project.
On July 22, 2011, the bomb exploded in the Government Quarter, rendering the area unrecognizable. In January 2021, the reconstruction began.
The project has already been discussed. Last fall, the project’s external quality assurance came out, showing that the new quarter could cost up to NOK 36.5 billion in total.
Now, however, the total price has increased by NOK 4.2 billion. The new total estimate is NOK 40.7 billion. It came about when the state budget for 2022 was presented today.
According to the Minister of Local Government and Modernization, Nikolai Astrup (H), the increase has three reasons:
- Price increase
- Increase in costs in the energy solution project. In June he wrote NRK that the solution, which will provide cooling and heating in the new Government Quarter, will be twice as expensive as previously assumed.
- The cost frame for the July 22 center is somewhat higher than previously estimated. The center has a proposed cost framework of $ 483 million. The government proposes an initial grant of 102.7 million in 2022.
The government will now consider shrinking the new government quarter
Astrup: has the ambition to scale down
The very high costs that occurred last fall caused the stagnation of several opposition parties. Both the Socialist People’s Party, the Socialist People’s Party, the Green Party and the Labor Party have argued that the project should be scaled down.
Construction phase 1 is already underway. The 20.9 billion cost framework was approved by the Storting in December 2021.
But the Storting also asked the government to consider the possibilities for cuts. One of the things they had to consider was whether any of the current ministerial buildings could be reused.
These evaluations and calculations have already been carried out, confirms Astrup. He says that they have analyzed three alternatives to reuse the current building.
All three alternatives will make the project significantly more expensive, according to Astrup. Therefore, it is cheaper to expand a new government quarter as planned.
New Government Quarter: It will have a VIP restaurant and a separate room for band, choir and magazine rehearsals.
– But we still have the ambition to downsize the project, Astrup tells Aftenposten.
The reduction of office space, which is in construction stages 2 and 3, is one of the things that may be relevant, according to the Minister of Local Government.
– We know that even if you are at work, you don’t necessarily sit in your place all the time. Also, we will probably see more use of home offices. So it will be natural to see that you need to size so everyone is at work at the same time, Astrup says.
You do not want to rule out that it may be relevant to remove some planned new buildings from the project.