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SBD Global/November 18, 2013/Facilities

St. Petersburg Awards Zenit Arena Contract To Builder That It Pulled Off Job

A contract for the completion of St. Petersburg's Zenit Arena football stadium has been awarded to Transstroy, the company that originally had the contract before it was canceled by the city last September. The contractor, owned by tycoon Oleg Deripaska, said the new contract was needed due to major changes to the original design of the stadium. St. Petersburg's authorities announced Transstroy as the winner of a tender for the completion of the stadium, which was run with little transparency. What is known about the tender is that just one more company, whose name was not disclosed, competed with Transstroy. A Transstroy spokesperson told SBD Global, "Since we won the original tender six years ago, the project has gone through substantial changes. There were FIFA's extra requirements to a stadium that was initially designed as a quality club arena but not a venue to host a FIFA World Cup semifinal."

CHANGES WERE NECESSARY: The spokesperson added, "Due to the changes, the original contract no longer complied with what actually needed to be done, and working under it was more difficult day after day. We'll make all efforts to implement our contractual obligations related to the construction of Eastern Europe's biggest and most high-tech stadium." She denied reports in some Russian media that the project could result in losses for Transstroy. "We hope to complete the project without losses," she said. Zenit Arena, which is currently 45% complete, is expected to be finished in late '15. The project's total cost is estimated at 34.9B rubles ($1.1B).
Vladimir Kozlov is a writer in Moscow.
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