It Must be North Harbour Stadium
THE nationwide CAMPAIGN TO REPLACE THE PRESENT SYSTEM OF COUNCIL RATES WITH A FAIRER SYSTEM INCLUDING RESTRAINTS ON COUNCILS ABILITY TO INCREASE EXPENDITURE WITHOUT THE SPECIFIC APPROVAL OF THE COMMUNITY
13 November 2006
Statement from David Thornton
North Harbour – the undeniable case for new stadium for Rugby World Cup and beyond.
And without the risk of needing ratepayer funding.
And North Harbour is listed by Government as ‘fall back’ option to Eden Park.
With the Waterfront option now becoming increasing unacceptable the attention will swing back to Eden Park.
But the arguments against Eden Park - which prompted the investigation into the waterfront option - remain firmly in place.
- It is limited in terms of usage compared to either Waterfront or North Harbour
- It has severe congestion potential – and the $43 million proposed for rail access upgrade will not alter that to any great degree
- It will require substantial ratepayer funding
- Auckland could be tied up forever in arguments between Auckland City Council which wants to be top dog in the region – and the ARC, which also wants to be top dog,
Ministers Mallard and Cullen appear to have said if ‘Auckland’ cannot agree on either Waterfront or Eden Park the main stadium for RWC 2011 will be Jade Stadium Christchurch.
However his review team in fact nominated North Harbour as a ‘fall back’ option. This is revealed in the ‘Stadium Comparison’ paper released last Friday.
With no Waterfront, North Harbour becomes the option to Eden Park.
North Harbour has none of these problems.
- North Harbour has no insurmountable Resource Management problems – mainly amending current consents so increase seating limits from 45,000 to 60,000.
- North Harbour has excellent bus and traffic access – including busway from the south, the first section of Western Ring Route will have been completed, northern motorway will be open from Puhoi. And plenty of parking.
- No train – but, over time, the new busway has been designed for conversion to light rail.
- Bus transport is 12 minutes to Britomart and Viaduct. [Closer than Homebush to Darling Harbour by train]
- No residential neighbours – in the centre of a developing commercial centre which may have some mixed limited residential/commercial in one area.
- Unfettered access during construction. Available for 7 days a week construction.
- Cheapest to build at approx $250million.
- Govt has $200 million available for waterfront option which should be transferred to North Harbour.
- This means the balance could be raised without rates or other taxes.
Only possible drawback – pro- waterfront people claim their site has restaurants or hotels immediately available..
Just look at Stadium Australia and at newly expanded Twickenham.
How far are they from hotels and restaurants?
[NOTE. David Thornton is a former - North Shore City Councillor, Glenfield Community Board Member, member of Auckland Regional Land Transport Committee]