German chancellery’s extension costs rise by 177M euros

Sep 7, 2022, 8:19 PM | Updated: Sep 8, 2022, 8:48 am

FILE - Dark clowds covert sky over the frontside of the German Chancellery in Berlin, May 26, 2009....

FILE - Dark clowds covert sky over the frontside of the German Chancellery in Berlin, May 26, 2009. The costs for the planned extension of Germany's Chancellery will rise to 777 million euros, 773 million Dollars, which 177 million euros more than initially planned. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber, File)

(AP Photo/Markus Schreiber, File)

BERLIN (AP) — The cost of the German chancellery’s planned extension will rise to 777 million euros ($773 million), which is 177 million euros more than initially planned.

The increase in costs is related to integrating new climate protection measures, a tunnel for deliveries that hadn’t been included in the initial building plan, rising prices of material due to inflation and other issues, a senior German official who spoke on condition of anonymity in line with government policy said Thursday.

The new extension of the sandstone building in downtown Berlin is needed because the chancellery’s staff has grown from 400 to 750 employees, officials said. Currently, about 200 staff members work at different locations spread across the capital because there is not enough office space inside the German seat of government.

The growing costs for the extension, which will include 400 new offices in a long, U-shaped annex, a helicopter landing site and a bridge across the Spree river, have been criticized by some who say that in a time of exploding costs of living for ordinary citizens, the government should not invest millions of taxpayers’ money into the building, but Chancellor Olaf Scholz defended the extension.

“It’s a long planned continuation of the construction of the current chancellery for a place for those who work here and who are now scattered among many buildings,” he said earlier this week on ZDF public television. “And I believe that such a long prepared planning, which is now very far advanced, must also be completed.”

The original chancellery was built from 1997-2001, following Germany’s reunification in 1990 and the move of many parts of the government from Bonn to Berlin.

Berliners soon dubbed the light grey building “the federal washing machine,” or Bundeswaschmaschine in German, because its round glass façade faintly resembles the front of a gigantic washing machine.

The construction of the extension, which will then become part of the so-called chancellery campus which also includes a park, is planned for 2028.

It’s not the first major building project in Germany that became much more expensive than initially planned.

Berlin’s new airport, which opened in 2020 with a delay of nine years, cost some 6 billion euros — about three times what was originally planned. Hamburg’s landmark concert hall, the Elbphilharmonie, climbed from an initially planned 77 million euros to 789 million euros. It opened in 2016 — six years later than planned.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Photo: Republican presidential candidate and former President Donald Trump sits in the courtroom at...

Michael R. Sisak, Jennifer Peltz, Eric Tucker and Jake Offenhartz, The Associated Press

Trump tried to ‘corrupt’ the 2016 election, prosecutor alleges as hush money trial gets underway

Trump tried to illegally influence the 2016 election by preventing damaging stories about himself from becoming public, a prosecutor said.

2 days ago

Image: Former President Donald Trump and his lawyer Todd Blanche appear at Manhattan criminal in Ne...

Associated Press

Police to review security outside courthouse hosting Trump trial after man sets himself on fire

Crews rushed away a person after fire was extinguished outside where jury selection was taking place in the Donald Trump criminal trial.

5 days ago

Photo: Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas is sworn-in before the House Committee on Hom...

the MyNorthwest Staff with wire reports

Senate dismisses two articles of impeachment against Homeland Security secretary, ends trial

The Senate dismissed impeachment charges against Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, as Republicans pushed to remove him.

7 days ago

idaho gender-affirming care...

Associated Press

Supreme Court allows Idaho to enforce its ban on gender-affirming care for transgender youth

The Supreme Court is allowing Idaho to enforce its ban on gender-affirming care for transgender youth while lawsuits over the law proceed.

8 days ago

Image: Former President Donald Trump speaks to the press in Manhattan state court in New York City ...

Associated Press

Trump’s hush money trial gets underway; 1st day ends without any jurors selected

The historic hush money trial of Donald Trump got underway Monday with the arduous process of selecting a jury to hear the case.

8 days ago

Photo: Israeli Iron Dome air defense system launches to intercept missiles fired from Iran, in cent...

Tia Goldenberg and Josef Federman, The Associated Press

Israel is quiet on next steps against Iran — and on which partners helped shoot down missiles

On Sunday, Israel's leaders credited an international military coalition with helping thwart a direct attack from Iran.

9 days ago

German chancellery’s extension costs rise by 177M euros