It didn’t take Cuenca Mayor Marcelo Cabrera long to make good on his promise to restart tram construction. The mayor and city transportation officials told hundreds of workers Monday morning in El Centro that they now worked for the city and not for the Spanish consortium that had been managing the project.
Construction shut down a week ago when the city and Consorcio Cuatro Ríos de Cuenca (CCRC) reached an impasse over contract issues. Cabrera said he would make a decision Monday about taking over project management if a last-minute agreement was not reached. Instead, he made the decision on Sunday night.
City officials met with construction workers in Santo Domingo Plaza to announce the management change. Afterward, workers spread out along the tram route in the historic district to resume their duties.
Cabrera declared a state of “transportation emergency” on Saturday as negotiations with CCRC faltered. The declaration allows the city take over management and to reallocate funds for the project.
CCRC claims that the city violated the contract by adding extra work. The city responds that it offered to cover those costs.