Sadiq Khan has vented his “unhappiness, frustration and anger” at the growing costs of the London Stadium, which he warned would have to be “subsidised for the foreseeable future.
This week he appointed the forensic accountancy firm Moore Stephens to look into the rising costs of the former Olympic Stadium.
The firm’s investigation will be part of an inquiry that was launched in November after the cost of converting the stadium for West Ham’s use rose from a projected £272million to £323m, with the retractable seating alone costing £8m when previously estimated at £300,000.
It is still not known exactly how much it will cost to convert the stadium from football use to an athletics and music venue for the summer and back to football for the start of next season.
But Khan warned: “My unhappiness, frustration and anger is that the cost associated with the original conversion is more than we were promised. And... the annual cost of turning that into a culture and music venue is more than predicted — to the extent that it looks as if for the foreseeable future we will be subsidising this stadium.
“Had we known the cost would be as much for conversion as it has been, would that have happened? We’ve appointed a firm to find out what happened. If it’s going to cost us X million pounds to move it from a football stadium to a cultural one and back again to football, it begs the question: are we getting value for money?”