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Auckland City commends Sky City decision


June 14, 2002

Auckland City commends Sky City decision

Auckland City Council commends the Sky City decision to build a $60-million two-storey convention centre catering for up to 1500 people.

The council recently decided not to go into partnership with Sky City on the project. The chairman of the Recreation and Events committee, Councillor Scott Milne, says research indicates that to be “truly competitive in the international convention market, Auckland needs to provide a facility for more than 2000 people.”

“Auckland needs a convention centre, we are in no doubt about that, but we need to be assured that we are putting ratepayers’ money into the right convention centre. By not going ahead with this project we have effectively saved the city $6 million – the sum Sky City was seeking for the joint venture.”

Councillor Milne went on to say. “It’s tremendous that a private sector company has committed this sort of investment without ratepayers having to shell out a cent – it is good for the city.”

He says the Federal Street site has been well-utilised by Sky City but offers very little opportunity for expansion. “International research shows that a city that manages conventions will require a doubling of capacity every 10-13 years to be truly competitive.”

The City will continue to explore other options to cater for a 2,500-capacity convention centre, with the ability to expand to 4,000 with banqueting, exhibition and meeting room facilities. At the time of considering the Sky proposal, the council agreed it was a viable stop-gap measure.


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