Today’s Illustration: On Time . . . . Under Budget!

new panama canal leaking  $5 billion and it leaks!

On This Day:  June 26, 2016 — “The Panama Canal Expansion Project” Opens For Business

“The Panama Canal expansion project . . . also called the Third Set of Locks Project, doubled the capacity of the Panama Canal by adding a new lane of traffic allowing for a larger number of ships, and increasing the width and depth of the lanes and locks allowing larger ships to pass. The new ships, called New Panamax, are about one and a half times the previous size and can carry over twice as much cargo.

New Canal Official Proposal: April 24, 2006
Work Began: 2007
Announced Completion Date: 2014

2014 was the expected completion date, to coincide with the opening year of the 100th anniversary of the first Panama Canal Project . . . . “After a construction period lasting three years, the official opening is scheduled to take place in its anniversary year of 2014.”

New Completion Date: April 2016

New Completion Date: Completion date moved from October 2014 to April 2015

“In July 2012, however, it was announced that the expansion project had fallen six months behind schedule, pushing the opening date back from October 2014 to April 2015.

New Completion Date: Beginning of 2016

By September 2014, the new gates were projected to be open for transit at the “beginning of 2016.”

Completion Date: June 2016

Initial Estimated Cost: $3.2 billion — USDollars
Actual Cost: Over $5.25 billion — USDollars


Panama Canal expansion will be operational on April 1, 2016

The Panama Canal expansion will be operational for international maritime traffic on 1 April 2016, said Tuesday the Minister of Canal, Roberto Roy, during the laying of the last gate of the extension project of the road.

“We will complete the expansion of the Panama Canal, that is paramount. We just eleven months because the first of April (2016) the Canal will be open to international navigation,” Roy told reporters.

“Now what we have to do is step on the accelerator and end” works, said Roy.

Projected cost — $5.25 billion USDollars.”


“The expansion of the Panama Canal, a $5.3 billion project almost two years behind schedule and plagued by cost overruns and contractor disputes, will open on June 26, Canal Authority Administrator Jorge Quijano said on Wednesday.”

Over Budget:  20% over original estimated cost so far — “the Canal expansion, which is more than two years behind schedule, at least $1 billion over budget.”

New Canal Found Leaking:

Headline: “The New Panama Canal Is Leaking Water—And Money”  — Fortune Magazine – 2015

Headline: “Uh oh! New Panama Canal lock leaking — “From cost overruns to labor issues, the construction consortium working on the Panama Canal Expansion project has had its share of hiccups. Now United Groups for the Canal is back in hot water after photos began showing up on social media a few weeks back depicting some pretty serious leaks at the head of one of the new locks.”  — from SavannahNow


French Attempt — Original Panama Canal – 1880 – 1900 — Never Finished / Abandoned:  That was far from the case with the first attempt to build the Panama Canal by the French . . . .

Cost: $260 million USDollars and paid $40 million by the United States for property and equipment ownership.

Lost Of Lives: 20,000 – 30,000 people died

The United States Original Panama Canal: 

Cost : $375 million — plus $40 million to France — plus $10million to Panama

“It was the single most expensive construction project in United States history to that time. . . . [and] $23,000,000 below the 1907 estimate.

Lost Of Lives:  Approximately 6,000 people died.

Key Illustrative Thoughts:

•  counting the cost
•  building and battling
•  estimating
•  behind schedule
•  late
•  expansion
on time
•  overruns
•  cost
•  my best guess is
•  planning
•  plans of men
•  some of the cost is in lives
•  the greater cost may be the loss of lives / families / churches
•  behind schedule
•  behind schedule – again
•  again — new completion date
•  missing the mark
•  not even close
•  it’s leaking — 5 billion and its is leaking!


“On Time & Under Budget” — are the two phrases you want to hear when you are working on a project.   Those words are rarely heard together and often said separately of most building projects.  Whether it be a home or a government project — and surely not with a government project — the estimated and/or promised timeline for building and/or the cost of the project is grossly inaccurate.

However, when it comes to God’s plans and program — the Lord is never late and is sin is always on budget.


Other Information & Links:

See previous illustrations – links

Interestingly, one of the reasons argued for sticking with the Panama route, and not building the canal through Nicaragua, was that if it were built through Nicaragua, some other country might take over the Panama route, initially begun by the French, and finish it.  That would severely impact the Nicaragua route since the distance for shipping would be shortened with the Panama Canal available, as well as initiate competition.

. . . “a Chinese firm was recently awarded a contract to build a waterway through Nicaragua, the path initially favored by 19th century American engineers. While just a threat on paper for now, Panamanian authorities have responded with the possibility of digging a fourth set of locks to maintain dominance.” — Bloomberg news

“Then there is the matter of the Chinese. A Chinese billionaire, Wang Jing, who made money in financial consulting and telecommunications, has proposed carving a canal through Nicaragua. He’s hardly the first. People have been toying with similar plans for at least 200 years. The cost of that project has been estimated as high as $50 billion. And while that might not be a wise investment, it would create stiff and nearby competition for Panama.” — Washington Post

Great Pictures:

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