- 31. 03. 2015
Metrostav’s team led by Radim Čáp has completed the reconstruction of the steel load-bearing structure of the Stefan Grot-Rowecki Bridge on the S8 thoroughfare leading through Warsaw, reaching an important milestone in the closely-watched modernization of a 4.65-kilometer section of the most important road in the Polish capital.
Metrostav, the largest Czech construction company, has been working on the project, worth over five billion crowns, since July 2013. The contract was awarded by GDDKiA (General Directorate of National Roads and Motorways), the institution responsible for managing roads and motorways in Poland. Completion is scheduled for October 2015. In the course of 27 months, Metrostav’s team of 85 experts from both the Czech Republic and Poland will have completed a project that will have a major impact on the lives of people living in and visiting the Polish capital.
The modernization of the S8 expressway consists of building an additional lane in both directions wherever local conditions permit. Once completed, Warsaw’s main thoroughfare will have four to five lanes on each side. Taking place near the northern boundary of the city’s downtown area, the project includes 46 bridges and a 600-meter glass noise-reducing tunnel. Most noticeable to the public has been the reconstruction of the load-bearing structure of the Grota-Roweckiego Bridge, a seven-span steel structure over the Vistula River, and nearby interchanges.
In the middle of last February, the swift completion of Metrostav’s contract in Warsaw gained in importance when one of the city’s busiest connections over the Visla, the Łazienkowski Bridge, was so damaged by fire that car traffic will have to be rerouted for at least one and a half years. Since then, numerous comments have been made in the Polish media suggesting that the reconstruction contract should be awarded to the company that is repairing the Grota-Roweckiego Bridge, namely Metrostav. Examples of what has been written include: “All Polish contractors should use the Czech company as an example of how fast and efficiently work can be done and how smoothly a construction site can be run so as to prevent the public from being bothered needlessly. Bravo Metrostav!” Another debater responded: “How much do the Czechs pay you for such obtrusive hype? Every time there is an article about this project, I read comments about how great Metrostav is.” The reply read: “I don’t get paid anything. All I can see is that the work is progressing fast and efficiently.” Another person concluded: “They don’t need to pay anyone to say good things about them. It’s enough that their work is better than that of the others.”
”We would like to secure more contracts in Poland in the near future so that our well-coordinated team can continue to work together. Until now, however, contracts for which we have submitted bids were awarded to bidders that offered what clearly are dumping prices. Nonetheless, we expect that many local construction companies will abandon this malicious strategy, and that the time will come for our realistic budgets,” explained Project Manager Radim Čáp.
Metrostav’s performance on the Polish market should be facilitated by the establishment of a local subsidiary. Pavel Pilát, CEO of the Czech construction leader, emphasizes: “The Czech market is now being devastated for a seventh year in a row. In order to keep together specialized teams that have been built over many years, we are forced to seek opportunities in other countries. Although construction work is difficult to export, our revenues from contracts abroad today account for more than 20% of all revenues. We are working or have recently worked in such countries as Iceland, Norway, Finland, Belarus, Slovakia, and others. Another positive effect is that surveys that map the popularity of companies among graduates of technical universities identify Metrostav as an employer of choice, in part thanks to the fact that the firm gives employees the opportunity to gain experience abroad.”