PM Should Not ‘Write Off’ North Harbour Stadium
27 November 2006
Prime Minister Should Not ‘Write Off’ North Harbour Stadium - The Least Risky Option For Ratepayers.
For the Prime Minister to dismiss North Harbour Stadium as an option because ‘it’s at the far end of a motorway’ will shake any confidence ratepayers may have in her ability to view this important decision objectively – and question her knowledge of Auckland’s changing geography.
Both Auckland City Council and the ARC have told the government that their decisions included a condition that ratepayers are not left with any additional burden arising from the stadium choice.
We know that the Eden Park option is likely to put great pressure on Auckland City ratepayers and possibly regional ratepayers to help pay for construction and operational costs.
The North Harbour option is a much lower cost risk and already operates as a full multi-function venue.
This option has not been fully evaluated in any direct comparison with Eden Park and if ratepayers are to be protected cabinet must at the very least undertake such a comparison.
And the Prime Minster seems to have forgotten that considerable ratepayer funds are going into the building of the Northern Busway which runs almost to the stadium door and is a maximum of a 12 minute ride to downtown Auckland.
More ratepayer funding is also going into the first stages of the Western Ring Route which will place North Harbour Stadium at the junction of two major highways – the Ring Route and the Northern Motorway, which is about to extend as far north as Puhoi.
This location will not require the $43 million of ratepayer funding which would need to be spent on rail and roading at Eden Park
[NOTE; NoMoreRates emailed all members of Cabinet yesterday reminding them of the ‘no ratepayer funding’ conditions from both councils]