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New site for national stadium being put forward

New site for national stadium being put forward

“The perfect site is in Manukau” – Mayor Sir Barry Curtis

Manukau Mayor Sir Barry Curtis says the ideal location for a national stadium is a site in Wiri owned by the Crown which presents none of the difficulties confronting the waterfront and Eden Park options.

He is presenting a proposal to Prime Minister Helen Clark today for consideration. “I support a waterfront option but with every passing day that’s looking more and more difficult to achieve. So I am putting forward a more practical alternative.”

The vacant site is a former quarry on the corner of Wiri Station Road and Roscommon Road in Wiri, a business zone close to Auckland International Airport. It covers 40 hectares (100 acres) and will adjoin the Western Ring motorway once it is completed. The main trunk railway line runs right beside it.

“It is the best site in the country for a national stadium and would certainly cost less than the alternatives to get up and running. In fact it would be a much cheaper option.

“The site’s easy to get to and has excellent access. The land is already owned by the Government and it’s a twenty to thirty minute drive from Queen Street.”

Auckland International Airport is a three minute drive away, as is Manukau City Centre and the southern motorway in the other direction. Sir Barry says, “There would be no issue with neighbours because it is not in a residential area. The purchase cost would be nil and the site’s been extensively quarried, which means little in the way of earthworks is required. It’s a dream site.”

Funding of the project, with the land already owned by the Crown, would be on the same basis as for a waterfront option. Manukau would suggest to the Government that it considers an innovative way of funding such as a public-private partnership to allow the private sector to manage the facility once it opens.

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“In many respects I am proposing something similar to the Olympic Stadium at Homebush in Sydney, which Australians love. I’m sure New Zealanders would come to love their national stadium in Manukau also,” Sir Barry says.

ENDS

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