Marmaray Kadikoy, Nov '14. Photo: Rail Turkey

Is Marmaray Project Behind the Schedule?

News about suspension and delay of Marmaray Project took a lot of space in media in last weeks. One claim was a suspension of project due to financial problems of contractor. Another was that contractor slowed down (even stopped) working due to increase in costs.

Transportation Minister Mr Elvan denied claims about suspension. As he stated, the contractor had slowed down but had been warned by ministry. Ministry will work to speed up the project and will act upon conract terms if it’s not completed on time, which is June 2015.

Marmaray project

Shortly after, it was stated by a press release of Transport Ministry that the project continues with two subcontractors, OHL and Dimetronic, and is going to be completed by June 2015 as agreed. Below information was also given in press release:

The first phase of 13.5 km between Ayrilikcesme and Kazlicesme, including the Bosphorus crossing by tunnel is completed.

A part of second phase, 20 km part between Gebze and Pendik has started to be used by high speed train. The buildings, two lanes which Marmaray trains will use and stations on way have almost been completed.

Removal of current lines and demolish of buildings have been completed on the other part of second phase between Pendik-Ayrilikcesmesi and Kazlicesme-Halkali (43 km) and infrastructure works has begun.

All these statements show that there are some problems and it’ll not be easy to complete the project by June 2015. The contractors were generally blamed for this delay in media, social media and forums.

But, is Marmaray Project really behind the schedule?

Better respect on figures than our senses. Here’s the real schedule of project in 2014 budget:

(billion TL) Total Amount Investment until 2013 2014 Budget Remaining for 2015
Ayrilikcesme-Kazlicesme and Tunnel (1st Phase) 4,3 3,6 0,7 0
Gebze-Haydarpasa, Sirkeci-Halkali (2nd Phase) 3,9 1,1 0,5 2,3
Marmaray Railcars 1,6 1,2 0,1 0,3

As can be understood from the table, 40% completion was planned by the end of this year for 2nd phase (renewal of lines between Gebze-Haydarpasa and Sirkeci-Halkali) in 2014 budget of government.

This 40% completion is also in parallel with the completion figures in the press release of ministry. As stated, 30% of 2nd phase (Pendik-Gebze) is almost completed and removal/demolish process has been completed for the 70%. That means project is not behind the plans. The slow down at project, if true, may be related with the completion of the plans of 2014.

In this case, in order to be able to complete the project on time, a fund of 2.3 billion TL is needed next year where there will be only six months to spend all of this fund to complete 60% of the 2nd phase of Marmaray project.

Photo: Onur Uysal

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