A whole floor of the £1bn PFI Barts and Royal London redevelopment is standing empty

An entire floor of Britain’s most expensive PFI project will remain empty after health chiefs misjudged patient requirements.

The sixth floor of the £200m, nine-storey Barts Cancer Centre, which opened in East London in May this year, will not be fitted out due to a lack of need.

The building is part of a £1bn PFI contract awarded to a consortium of Skanska and Innisfree by the Barts and the London NHS Trust for work on the Barts and Royal London hospital sites.

A spokesperson for the Trust said: “On completion of the construction phase, one of the nine floors at Barts Cancer Centre was not filled out for immediate use. The decision not to fit out the sixth floor was the result of several reviews into the evolving needs of our patient population during the 13 year period between commissioning and completion of the Cancer Centre.

“Not fitting out the sixth floor has given us the flexibility to reconfigure our services with the minimum of disruption to our patients in the most cost-effective way.”

It is hoped that the centre, designed by HOK, will become a leading cancer research institute.

It was designed with significant input from patients and its chemotherapy rooms have views over the City of London, while the operating rooms feature floor-to-ceiling windows to provide natural light.

The entire PFI project has been controversial, however, and there was doubt over its future during 2005 and 2006 due to the massive cost of the 42-year contract. Labour’s Health Secretary Patricia Hewitt finally gave it the go-ahead in 2006 but only under strict cost conditions.

Work started in 2006 and is due for completion in 2016.