The cost of installing and making the controversial Hemo sculpture has risen to $743,029 and is looking to be installed by June, nearly two years after its original install date.
Information released to the Rotorua Daily Post by Rotorua Lakes Council under the Local Government Information and Meetings Act show a series of emails between the council and Kilwell Fibretube discussing when the sculpture could be installed and its cost.
At a council meeting in February a presentation was given by Kilwell Fibretube, the company 3D printing the sculpture. The presentation was confidential but released under the act.
The presentation said there had been an estimated $204,361 overspend.
The presentation said extra layers, extra testing, extra scaffolding and wages due to an extension of time had all driven the cost up.
It estimated installation would be done using a helicopter to fly the sculpture, which weighs 3429kg, to the location in two parts.
The council put out a statement on its website following its release of the information to the Rotorua Daily Post.
In the statement, the council confirmed the cost of making and installing the sculpture had risen to $743,029.
The council's contribution had risen from $270,000 to $388,000 as a result and other project partners had helped with the funding.
The initial cost estimate for the project was $500,000 and this was still the case when the council was questioned about the cost in May and November last year.
When asked about the cost in February the council said it was "still finalising details with the contractors".
The latest council statement said the final stages of construction were under way and "all going well" the sculpture should be installed by the end of June.
A June installation date would amount to a 23-month delay from when the 12m-high sculpture was first intended to be installed in July 2017.
Initially, the sculpture was to be completed after the construction of the Hemo Gorge roundabout but delays due to roadworks and the material being used to build the sculpture meant it was set back.
In the council's statement, Kilwell Fibretube chief executive Craig Wilson described the project as "ground-breaking" and a blend of engineering, manufacturing and art but said the project presented significant challenges.
"It's about showing what Rotorua is capable of.
"This sculpture is something that we and hopefully the whole community can be proud of and showcase to everybody that comes to visit here."
The sculpture originally needed to withstand 135 km/h winds but has now been built to withstand 175 km/h winds. The change required alterations to the design and material laminate and increased testing.