The Bechtel-Big Dig Scandal

The Boston Globe presents a damning three-part series on how State officials excuse and protect Bechtel for over $1 billion in mistakes on the Big Dig.

Read Time: 1 minute

February 21, 2003, 7:00 AM PST

By Chris Steins @urbaninsight


"A yearlong Globe investigation found hundreds of similar errors committed by the Big Dig's management company, which is led by one of the world's largest engineering firms, Bechtel Corp. of San Francisco, and includes another industry titan, Parsons Brinckerhoff of New York. The Globe determined that at least $1.1 billion in construction cost overruns, or two-thirds of the cost growth to date, are tied to Bechtel mistakes... Yet, even as Bechtel's errors helped drive up the Big Dig's cost, the company never paid for any of its mistakes. Instead, it profited. To date, Bechtel has received more than $264 million beyond what its original contracts called for, in part because Bechtel received additional money to fix its errors, records show... What the Globe did find was that Bechtel had no financial incentive to minimize errors, and that its officials routinely advised the state to pay overruns to smooth over problems that were often of Bechtel's own making."

Thanks to Chris Steins

Tuesday, February 11, 2003 in The Boston Globe

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