Boris Johnson: almost a billion pounds wasted on vanity projects!

Public money wasted:

Garden Bridge £52 m
New Routemaster £321.6 m
Emirates cable car £21 m
Water cannon £323,000
Hire bikes £225 m
(hire bikes was supposed to be “cost neutral” – where have we hear THAT before!)
Estuary airport £5.2 m
Olympic stadium conversion £305.5 m
(original cost estimate with large part from football club which did not materialise)
Statue at Olympic Stadium (Orbit) £6.1 m

The article:

“The scrapping of Boris Johnson’s Garden Bridge project has exposed a £940m bill for his “vanity projects” as London mayor and prompted a senior Labour figure to say her party was partly to blame.

The figure is the total spent on eight projects closely associated with the former mayor, including the pedestrian bridge for the Thames that was abandoned this week, which either failed or whose value for money has been questioned.

His office insisted that the schemes represented important investments and that to describe them as vanity projects was “ignorant and wrong”.

Three Johnson projects ended in failure at a cost of more than £57.5m: the Garden Bridge; the purchase of water cannon; and the Thames estuary airport. ..”

Five others: the new Routemaster bus; hire bikes; the Emirates Air Line cable car; the conversion of the Olympic stadium and the ArcelorMittal Orbit helter-skelter, all did go ahead at a combined cost of more than £900m. They have run into problems after turning out to be far more expensive than promised.

The former Labour minister Margaret Hodge, whose review of the Garden Bridge project led to its abandonment, said she was shocked at how “irresponsible” Johnson was with public money. But during her review she was also struck by the lack of scrutiny of his profligate spending decisions when mayor.

“I kept thinking how the hell was he allowed to get away with this,” Hodge told the Guardian. …”

https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2017/aug/18/bridge-940m-bill-boris-johnsons-mayora-vanity-projects-garden-bridge-routemaster-bus

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