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$80m Vector Arena set to raise the roof

MEDIA RELEASE
26 May 2005

$80m Vector Arena set to raise the roof

Vector was today confirmed as the naming rights sponsor of Auckland city’s 12,000 seat indoor arena.

The announcement follows the successful installation of the building’s 210-tonne central spine truss which will support the roof of New Zealand’s largest indoor sports and entertainment facility, to be promoted as “the entertainment hub of the Pacific.”

“The project, made possible by Auckland City Council’s $68 million investment, is now scheduled for a March 2006 opening. This will pave the way for visits by some of the biggest names in sport and show business who previously by-passed Auckland and New Zealand for lack of a suitable venue,” says Auckland Mayor Dick Hubbard.

“The Vector Arena is the result of years of council planning. It puts Auckland firmly on the map as home to the country’s leading entertainment facility and ranks us up there alongside the world’s best venues,” he said.

“We’re delighted with the choice of naming rights’ sponsor. Approving their involvement was a pleasure, and we welcome them on board as a major partner in this exciting venture.

“The building itself will be a marvellous example of state-of-the-art construction and technology and its central location will make Auckland the envy of many international cities,” said Mr Hubbard. “I can’t wait to welcome the first acts.”

Mr Hubbard said the arena development was the first example of a BOOT (Build Own Operate Transfer) arrangement for this type of facility in New Zealand.

Under the BOOT, the council has a partnership with Quay Park Arena Management Limited (QPAM), to build, own, operate and maintain the facility over a 40-year rights period. At the end of 40 years, ownership of the arena will transfer to the council at no further cost to ratepayers and in good working order.

“This way, the council gets a world-class new venue for the city without having to take on the full risks of building or operating it.”

“The Vector Arena is a fantastic example of the public and private sectors working together,” said Mr Hubbard.

The development of the arena is contributing to Aucklanders’ vision of their CBD as one of the world’s most vibrant and dynamic business and cultural centres.

The arena will contribute to Auckland’s CBD being seen as a premier business location and the most popular destination for Aucklanders and visitors to the region.

Ends

Notes to editors:
Auckland City has proudly led and planned the development of the Auckland City Arena, and is its principal funder.

Quay Park Arena Management (QPAM) is responsible for building the arena within budget. Also, QPAM – and not the city’s ratepayers – will carry the risks associated with operating and maintaining the arena.

Under this arrangement the risks associated with building, owning, managing and maintaining the arena are allocated to the party – in this case QPAM – which has the experience and expertise to manage them.

The Arena is the first arena outside North America to be admitted to the exclusive ArenaNetwork, whose members include world-class arenas such as the Staples Center in LA, the Air Canada Centre in Toronto and the American Airlines Center in Detroit, all of which have the capacity to seat up to 20,000 people.

As well as providing a venue for large community events, the Arena will bring national and international events, people, jobs and business opportunities that will make our city a more exciting and more prosperous place to live and work.

The central location of the arena is an opportunity that few cities get. Overseas experience shows that arenas work best when they are centrally located, within easy reach of public transport, CBD parking buildings, accommodation and central city entertainment.

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