Valuable Chinatown art installation destroyed in Sydney light rail construction blunder

Source: Xinhua| 2018-11-01 11:18:55|Editor: Liangyu
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SYDNEY, Nov. 1 (Xinhua) -- In what's being described as a massive blunder, a valuable artwork in Sydney's Chinatown has been destroyed by the Australian harbour city's light rail construction project.

An art installation valued at around 500,000 Australian dollars (356,000 U.S. dollars), which integrated cloud-shaped brass pieces into the footpath, was excavated by workers and covered with bitumen.

The renowned contemporary artist Lindy Lee, who created the piece called Cloud Gate around five years ago, voiced her frustration to the Australian Broadcasting Corporation on Thursday.

"It just feels like the left hand wasn't speaking to the right hand," she said.

"It was a very expensive project, because it's two streets of Chinatown."

"You can imagine, a lot of the budget went to infrastructure, so you'd think after all this expense they'd figure out a way of going around it."

"It's very disappointing, it was an awful lot of effort on my part," she added.

According to local media reports, the department of Transport for New South Wales (NSW) will now seek compensation from Acciona, the Spanish contractor in charge of the project, as the Sydney Council plans to eventually restore the artwork.

Plagued by controversy, the 2.1 billion Australian dollars (1.5 billion U.S. dollars) tram development which began in 2015 was originally set for completion by March 2019, however budget blowouts and massive delays now put the finishing date sometime around the middle of 2020.

Making matters worse, Acciona is now locked in a bitter legal battle with the NSW state government over financial grievances.

With many disruptions to key roads in the Central Business District, the lengthy construction process has already become a major talking point for media commentators and residents alike.