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Council to look at port land for Sports Centre

16 August 2006

Council to look at port land for Indoor Sports Centre

Wellington City Council officers are exploring whether the Indoor Community Sports Centre could be located on CentrePort land, Mayor Kerry Prendergast says.

“I am aware that rumours are circulating about the matter and I would like to set the record straight. Nothing has been decided and no deals have been struck. We are talking to Greater Wellington Regional Council and CentrePort about the idea but there is still a lot of work to do before any agreement is reached or decision made.”

Mayor Prendergast says she first approached Greater Wellington about using port land four weeks ago. It responded positively and Council officers are now discussing the logistics and possible options.

This would put the Indoor Sports Centre close to the bus and rail hub, and also near the Westpac Stadium.

Mayor Prendergast says the port land was always an option for the Indoor Sports Centre, but was discounted by the Indoor Stadium Working Group in their work because of the costs involved in purchasing the land.

Mayor Prendergast has approached Greater Wellington about gifting the land, or part of it, as its contribution to a regional sports facility.

“I approached Greater Wellington with the proposal that given the increase to 12 courts the Indoor Sports Centre would be more of a regional facility and gifting the land on which it can be built can be their contribution to that facility.”

Greater Wellington Chairman Ian Buchanan says the Regional Council is interested in the idea of putting the Indoor Sports Centre in the Harbour Quays development.

“We have asked CentrePort to investigate if they can fit the centre into the available space, and to see if issues around parking and effects on port operations can be resolved. If these issues can be resolved, and we don’t know yet if they can, then I think everyone would agree this would be a very positive and creative use of this space.”

Greater Wellington Regional Council is the majority owner of CentrePort, on behalf of the regional community.

Mayor Prendergast says the Kemp report released by Wellington City Council last week stated that mixed-use development was preferred at Harbour Quays. “Putting the Indoor Sports Centre there would help achieve that.”

However, she says there are still many issues to be considered, including the total cost of the project and parking.

The Council’s Sport and Recreation Portfolio Leader Councillor John Morrison says the Council is absolutely committed to building a quality indoor sports facility.

“We have committed $40 million to construct this facility – it will happen. The work that is being done is about finding the best solution for the city.”


Ends

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