Kiev- Ukraine`s Euro 2012 stadium saga took an unlikely turn on Saturday after a senior government official said either a German or English construction company would overhaul the Kiev venue, according to Nation Multimedia .
German GMP (Gerkan, Marg und Partner) or US Foster and Partners are on a government short list to rebuild the 90,000-seat Olympic Stadium in Kiev, said Ivan Vasiliuk, Ukraine Vice Premier during a 5 Kanal television interview.
The Ukrainian government will select one of the two companies by the end of July as general contractor for the massive works project reportedly costing over 200 million dollars, Vasiliuk said.
Ukraine and Poland were named co-hosts for the UEFA-run prestige tournament in April 2007.
UEFA boss Michel Platini, during a vist to the former Soviet republic earlier this week, warned Ukraine might lose the event if the stadiums aren`t ready. Platini spoke of "grounds for concern" in the long delay on the overhaul of Kiev`s stadium.
Three different branches of the Ukrainian national government are locked in a battle to determine how the Soviet-era Olympic Stadium, the planned site of the Euro 2012 final, should be brought to UEFA standards.
Disputes over contractors, and which government agency would hire them, led to the naming in April of Archasia Design Group LTD as the contractor for the Olympic Stadium project, only to have another branch of the Ukrainian government sack the Taiwan firm in June.
The bids by Foster and GMP plan substantial but measured changes in Olympic Stadium`s structure, and work would be completed in a maximum 28 months, Vasiliuk said.
If accurate, the time frame would remove a major UEFA criticism of the Ukrainian preparation effort so far: that all stadiums must be ready one year before the June 2012 competition kick off.
Construction in the centre of the Ukrainian capital Kiev around the Olympic Stadium has seen problems for years, as a half-built shopping centre next to the stadium makes evacuation dangerous according to UEFA standards.
Two Ukrainian commercial clans are locked in a bitter dispute on land ownership adjacent to the stadium. Ukraine`s central government has repeatedly ordered the shopping centre to be torn down, only to have city judges order no work be done until the ownership conflict is resolved.