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City bracing for legal claims due to Union Station delays

The city is bracing itself for lawsuits which could stem from delays to the multi-year, $1.5-billion Union Station revitalization project.

“There have been reports of some delays and problems,” Coun. Denzil Minnan-Wong said.

“So we’re expecting to have potentially some litigation as a result of those delays.”

In a report to be presented to the General Management Committee on Monday, Chief Corporate Officer Josie Scioli attributes the delays to a number of factors, including “performance issues” with general contractor Carillion Canada and subcontractors.

The York Concourse, for example, was scheduled to be done by the end of last year, but won’t be finished until October at the earliest.

Carillion didn’t respond to a request for comment.

The report recommends council approve another $550,000 in legal fees “to bolster its defense against construction claims being filed.”

If revised, the city’s contract with Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP would be valued at $1.5 million.

“The staff believes [it] can take that extra money and allocate it to any potential claims,” Minnan-Wong said.

“We’re expecting there are going to be claims. They’re going to say, ‘Look, this is taking longer to do this and because of that we were delayed and that means we’re going to have to bring more people in. That’s going to cost more money … and therefore we’re going to sue you for other costs.’ As an example of a hypothetical, you know?”

The Union Station project is in its fourth year, and is taking place alongside the construction of a new TTC subway platform, the Union Pearson Express station and GO Transit work.