Hospital builder fined nearly half a million euros

Pauls Stradiņš Clinical University Hospital has approached the builders of hospital A2 building Velve LLC with requirements to fulfil contractual obligations – to completely dismantle the nearly 8,000 square meter basement affected by mold and pay a contractual penalty of EUR 448,734 calculated for work delayed by the builder, the hospital said in a statement on January 25.

This week Stradiņš Hospital sent a letter to Velve noting that the builder has so far not fulfilled the conditions for execution of the works referred to in the construction contract concluded in August 2020, as well as the planned deadlines for execution of the construction work and cash flow are significantly delayed. This has led to a risk of non-absorption of resources from the European Regional Development Fund. 

Inadequate quality of construction work has also been found, as the vast basement has developed mold. While the builder has repeatedly tried to eliminate the mold, testing at the Institute's BIOR on January 8 this year still found mold in the basement.

"The presence of mold is dangerous in any kind of premises, not to mention rooms in a treatment or surgery block. In our view, it is not even negotiable – the building needs to be not only technically ready but also high-quality and safe, because the safety and health of patients and our medical personnel is at the forefront,” Lauris Vidzis, Chairman of the temporary Board of Stradiņš hospital, said in a statement.

In the hospital's assessment, it was mold due to negligence on the part of the builder. The risks of mould were already identified in October 2021, and a few months later construction supervision recommendations were issued to the builder. The builder did not take those into account, according to the hospital.

Stradins hospital has requested LLC Velve to completely dismantle the internal structures of the basement of the new building and submit information that would certify the capacity of the builder to implement the works for full dismantling of the internal structures and engineering communications of the basement and a workable time plan for completion of construction works, as well as a certification regarding sufficiency of resources for execution of the works.

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