In a review of Cuenca’s tram project, Ecuador’s Comptroller has identified 50 construction and management problems. A representative from the comptroller’s office met Friday with the tram management team to review the major issues.
The comptroller said that none of the construction problems directly affects the operation of the tram itself.
The report noted defects in concrete construction in a number of locations, particularly on sidewalks and tram stations. It said that the contractor failed to repair damage caused during construction. The report also criticized work areas for containing hazards to workers and, in some cases, pedestrians.
The report also said that inferior quality concrete and mixing techniques were used in the construction of some sidewalks and stations.
The report’s harshest criticism was for project management’s failure to levy fines on contractors for late delivery of work. The comptroller said that contracts clearly state that fines would be levied in cases where the contractor fails to complete work on deadline.
Tram management responded that in most cases of late delivery, there were issues beyond the control of the contractor that prevented timely completion.
Responding to the report, Cuenca Mayor Marcelo Cabrera said the city would not accept delivery of the work that is not “in good condition”. He said he has ordered his quality control engineer, Guillermo Velez, to review the comptroller’s findings on concrete quality to make sure specifications are met.
Cabrera said that tram work is continuing despite slow payments from the national government and believes it will be up and running by the end of the year.