Edinburgh’s Princes Street will be clear of tram works and open to buses and taxis by the end of the month.
The City of Edinburgh Council has confirmed that the main street will reopen west of Waverley Bridge by June 30 – next weekend.
Work will continue at Shandwick Place while St Andrew Square and York Place will be closed for work from autumn, expected to finish by the end of the year.
But as the council attempts to complete the project as soon as possible, details have emerged around pay-offs for former chiefs of Edinburgh Transport Initiative (TIE), who walked out on the doomed venture in June 2011.
A document released by the council has revealed that around £406,000 was handed over to bosses in compensation when the beleaguered TIE was eventually scrapped in October.
Details show director Steven Bell received £87,000 while chief executive Richard Jeffrey pocketed £83,000, along with managing director Alastair Richards and Infraco director Frank McFadden, who were given almost £50,000.
It also transpired that top seven TIE directors received full salaries and bonuses last year, despite the controversial project being closed down in October, earning a combined total of more than £1.3m between them in 2011 to 2012.
Alastair Maclean, director of corporate governance, said: "The council took direct control of the tram project in 2011 at a point when it was clear a change of direction was needed.
"Following the council decision on September 2, 2011, construction is now proceeding in line with the revised budget and programme.
"New governance arrangements were put in place and the council brought in professional project management expertise and agreed to wind down TIE Limited, as was reported on August 25, 2011.
"There was a significant cost in resolving the issues with TIE and putting in place more effective control of the project."
Lesley Hinds, the council's transport convener, said: "I have long called for greater transparency into the tram project and the publication of these figures is a step in the right direction - even if I don't agree with the amounts.
"This is an opportunity to draw a line under TIE's involvement and for us as councillors to ensure that, from here on in, the project is tightly managed and all spending is properly scrutinised."
Due to be completed by summer 2014, the £776m tram line will run between Edinburgh Airport and St Andrew Square, though was originally meant to go to Newhaven.
TIE was wound down after continued disputes with the tram contractors, which led to delays and increasing costs.
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