Now 16 months after Prague 7 called a tender to secure new headquarters for the district’s town hall comes a twist in the case: what had previously been presented as a classic public tender has been recast as mere “market research.” Could it be that the district mayor, Marek Ječmének (Civic Democrats, ODS) is looking to de facto cancel the tender without having to admit the process has failed – yet again?
Almost a year has passed since the Prague 7 administration issued a tender for new premises. From 11 offers, two potential locations have been selected: part of PPF Group’s Argentine Star project, and Mercury Tower, belonging to the firm Argentinská 38. PPF is asking Kč 762 million; Mercury Tower’s is Kč 845 million. Regardless, Prague 7 doesn’t have the money, and controversial moves to raise it have run into trouble.
The Prague 7 district has already been looking for a new location for its Town Hall for an incredible 17 years now, with the moving date set for 2015. The most recent attempt was a fiasco; just ahead of signing the purchase contract, the competition was canceled. One might expect that this time around, councilors would make sure things went smoothly and prepare a “bulletproof” contract for the biggest developers in order to polish the district’s sullied reputation. Alas, the opposite is true.