Hon Trevor Mallard
Minister for the Rugby World Cup
27 November 2006 Media Statement
Cabinet today has decided to support the redevelopment of Eden Park stadium, subject to resolution of design, funding and governance issues, following the inconsistent stadium preferences nominated by the Auckland Regional Council and Auckland City Council last week.
"The decision on a stadium had always been one for Auckland to make but unfortunately Auckland has been unable to agree to a preference, with Auckland City Council in favour of a waterfront site, and the Auckland Regional Council not favouring such a site.
"Cabinet today considered two options given this lack of unanimity - either to convene a group of all key parties to see whether issues with the waterfront could be overcome, or to support a redevelopment of Eden Park, which was the Auckland City Council's second option, subject to further work.
"Cabinet has decided to support a redeveloped Eden Park but has also asked for more work to be done to agree on the redevelopment design, and on governance and funding issues going forward, with a report back to Cabinet by December 13. This report back date will not affect building timelines.
"As the cabinet paper I am releasing today notes, the resource consent, funding, governance and future economic viability issues relating to Eden Park have sufficient uncertainty that further analysis is prudent.
"It has also been agreed that North Harbour be considered as a reserve option for the time being, and that Rugby NZ 2011 Ltd be informed that it is the government's view that the final should be held in Auckland," Trevor Mallard said.
"Cabinet decided to explore an alternative stadium site after it became clear - in August - that the cost of an Eden Park redevelopment had gone from around $150 million when the hosting bid was won, to an estimated $320 million. The latest Eden Park version is estimated to cost $385 million. If the government had been advised of the escalation of these costs earlier, then the timeframe would not have been so tight, and the process of evaluating options and consultation would have been much different," Trevor Mallard noted.
"The government felt
that since there would be some public funding involved,
had a duty and responsibility to explore alternative options to ensure that the right decision was made in terms of the value and spinoffs that could be delivered for this level of investment."