Wed, Jun 06, 2012 - Page 2 News List

Lawmakers question bid for Kaohsiung arts center

CONNECTIONS?Lawmakers said personal relationships could have played a role in L&K Engineering — which was disqualified in the first bid — winning the final bid

By Chris Wang  /  Staff reporter

Democratic Progressive Party legislators Chiu Chih-wei, left and Hsu Chih-chieh hold a press conference in Taipei yesterday about the bidding process for construction of the Wei Wu Ying Center for the Arts in Greater Kaohsiung.

Photo: Chu Pei-hsiung, Taipei Times

A “problematic” third bidding process for the Wei-wu-ying Center for the Arts in Greater Kaohsiung could be another scandal in the making, in the wake of the controversy surrounding the rock musical Dreamers (夢想家), lawmakers said yesterday.

L&K Engineering Co won the special-equipment construction bid, which forms part of the NT$12 billion (US$400 million) project, off a base price of NT$1.38 billion in the second bidding process after being disqualified in the first bidding process, Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) legislators Chiu Chih-wei (邱志偉) and Hsu Chih-chieh (許智傑) told a press conference.

The lawmakers said personal relationships could have played a role in the bidding results, as the seven members of the bid review committee either have personal connections to key members of the Taiwan Association of Theater Technology or are members of the association, which was founded by L&K representative Chang Yi-yu (張翼宇).

L&K Engineering had no previous experience in the construction of cultural projects, Chiu said.

The bid could have been tailor-made for a specific bidder, because L&K did not re-enter the process and win the tender until the center disclosed the identities of members of the review committee after the first bidding process failed, he said.

Chen Shan-pao (陳善報), director of the center’s preparatory office, said L&K Engineering was ruled ineligible in the first bidding process because of documentation issues, but it was eligible for the second bid after it submitted the required documents.

The names of the committee members were kept confidential until the first bid failed, he said.

He added that it was legal to retain six of seven committee members for the second bidding process.

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