Whereas it seemed inappropriate to respond to the wholly subjective criticism of the Forbes survey (AJ 18.7.02), I feel it is essential to set out the facts regarding the cost of the building, particularly in the light of Michael Quinn's letter (AJ 25.7.02).
In fact, the envelope of the Dome, including roof, walls, steel structure and main foundations, came to a mere £43 million. This figure formed part of an overall contract value of £240 million, which included core services for all the exhibitions, roads, infrastructure, river walks, parkland areas, lighting, extensive secondary buildings including security, entrance kiosks, first-aid buildings, retail and storage buildings, landscaping, signature, fences, outdoor seating and all the other necessary requirements of a 28ha public site.
I should also point out that RRP brought this immensely complex project in ahead of time and returned £20 million to the client.
The figure of £800 million that has been quoted in the press includes £560 million allocated to the contents, NMEC's operational costs, etc, over which, naturally, we had no control.
Robert Torday, Richard Rogers Partnership, London