Theme Park, Amusement Park and Attractions Industry News

Polish park project suffers setback

Oh dear. Following all the fanfare over the last 18 months regarding the proposed Adventure World Warsaw (AWW) project, its developers have been forced to admit that construction will be delayed following alleged financial irregularities with its general contractor Imtech Poland.

We are saddened by the recent information on the internal problems of companies from Imtech group,” said a statement issued by the AWW board on February 4. “While AWW theme park enjoys a strong support from public authorities and it is evident that the park is a viable project that has all the needed security for construction permits, the construction is managed in the development phase based on shareholders’ finance. However, the board of AWW is confident that long term finance will be secured [at the] latest in the second quarter of 2013.”

Imtech Poland is the local associate of Dutch company Royal Imtech BV, which in a recent press release stated that it was postponing publication of its 2012 financial statement until it had completed a “forensic” investigation into four Polish projects including AWW. It has identified an advance payment of “around 200 million euro” as being “considerably higher than the incurred costs” and as such is expected to write-off of at least €100 million.

Following the suspension of Imtech’s Polish management, the AWW board adds that it, “remains confident that Imtech Poland will properly perform as a general contractor park construction and offers any needed assistance in investigation of irregularities that has been reported at Imtech Poland.”

A handover ceremony was held on the site in Grodzisk Mazowiecki, about 50km from the Polish capital, in October but it is not known how much – if any – construction has actually been carried out. The park’s developer, Les Palm, has also been unable to reveal any more about the park’s investors other than that they are based Luxembourg. An article in ta recent edition of the German magazine Kirmes & Park Revue made a number of damaging allegations about the project, which is claimed had been significantly reduced in size.

Billed as Poland’s first theme park resort, Les Palm’s plans called for an indoor waterpark, entertainment village and two themed hotels. The €400 million first phase, including the theme park, was last reported as due for opening in 2015, but we await an update.

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