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  1. ITV Report

Tate St Ives expansion costs soar

The Tate in St Ives has been closed since October 2015. Photo: ITV West Country

ITV News has learned that the cost of expanding the Tate in St.Ives has almost doubled. It was forecast it would cost twelve million pounds, but the latest estimate is just short of twenty.

Business owners say St Ives has suffered because of the closure. Credit: ITV West Country

The temporary closure of the famous venue has also had an unwanted impact on the town - three galleries in just one area have closed.

But the Tate says the revamped building will bring a major boost to the local economy.

Credit: ITV West Country

The sky high increase has surprised many in the town like businessman Neil Whitham:

So the estimate,our funding estimate for 2012 was £12 million but since that time we've tendered the project.We've gone through the initial stages of excavation etc and the project costs have naturally gone up.

– Mark Osterfield, Executive Director, Tate St Ives

The Tate has been closed since October 2015 while the improvements are carried out. Art galleries in the Tregenna Hill area of the town say that's badly hit their trade.

One of them is David Hill who's gallery has been running for four years.

David Hill, Gallery owner Credit: ITV West Country

Mr.Hill isn't the only one suffering. 3 galleries in the street have had enough and shut up shop.

Three galleries in the town have shut since The Tate closed. Credit: ITV West Country

The Tate said what it called mechanical and electrical issues prevented it from opening while work was going on.

The Tate has pledged the present building will open next Spring and the extension will be finished in Autumn 2017.