The US Army Corps of Engineers have issued a new contract to complete construction of the US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) hospital project in Aurora by January 2018.

The project, which is being carried out by the construction consortium Kiewit-Turner, was initially scheduled to be completed by 2017.

Kiewit-Turner already spent $1.1bn on the project. The new contract authorises the builder to spend $571m to complete the facility, bringing the estimated project cost to $1.67bn.

In September, Congress approved the additional $625m needed to finish the delayed, over budget hospital, for which the money is to come from other accounts within the VA department budget.

Construction of the project started in 2010 and it secured a judgment against VA last December when the Civilian Board of Contract Appeals decided that VA breached its contract with the contractor.

"Veterans in Colorado and across the West have waited too long for the facility they were promised."

Following the judgment, work on the project stopped but was restarted days later when a bridge contract was put in place.

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US senator for Colorado Cory Gardner said: "Veterans in Colorado and across the West have waited too long for the facility they were promised.

"They have endured delay after delay and been dispirited by the VA’s mismanagement and cost overruns.

"The final spending authorisation that Congress passed in September coupled with the VA’s and the Corps’ signed contract paves the way to finish the state-of-the-art facility veterans deserve.

"I join Colorado veterans in awaiting the project’s completion, and I’ll continue to fight for transparency and accountability from the VA."

Located near the University of Colorado Hospital and Children’s Hospital Colorado, the new 184-bed facility in Aurora will replace an old, overcrowded hospital in Denver.

The project is being delayed due to cost overruns, poor design and overall mismanagement by the VA.