Stadium Concerns

November 10th, 2006 at 8:46 am by David Farrar

The more I think about the proposed Auckland waterfront stadium, the more nervous I get. It’s not that I am oppossed to the concept, but the potential for disaster seems high.

Thinking back to the Wellington stadium, the proposal was negotitated with key stakeholders over many years. It was a long, tough process, but one which led to a good outcome. Multiple locations were considered with public input deciding between Porirua and Wellington.

Now I think about this stadium proposal, developed in secret by politicans, and look at what is missing:

* There is no agreement with the sporting codes on whether they would use the stadium
* There is no agreement with the local authorities
* There is no agreement with the owners of the land
* The exact location seems to change by the day
* There is no owner (such as the Trust in Wgtn) and manager for the stadium!!
* There is no agreement on who will pay
* There are no sponsors
* There are no planning consents

As far as I can tell, and I await the official announcement, every single pillar necessary for a sound decision is absent. They don’t even know how many games a year the sporting codes would use the stadium for.

My other major concern is construction costs. The construction industry is at near full capacity with prices sky-rocketing. Now sure they may be able to get the job done on time, but they will have the Govt over a barrel in terms of increased costs. Whatever the price announced today is, I suggest you double it.

With tens of thousands of Aucklanders having lost power yesterday evening, the response to spending a billion dollars on a sports stadium, rather than oh say reliable power supply for Auckland, may go down badly.

I’m highly sceptical but not yet oppossed. I do want to see the details due to be announced later today.

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110 Responses to “Stadium Concerns”

  1. culma () says:

    Sad Indictment on this country, the hurdles we place in front of ourselves under the guise of consultation, have now hamstrung all of us into believing a project like this can’t be built inside 5 years.

    “Viva Le PC bullshit”

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  2. Pita () says:

    Leave rugby officials run rugby and politicians to ruin New Zealand

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  3. David C () says:

    Wha?

    If it weren’t for Helen we wouldn’t have the world cup here, do you see Don fronting up to a room full of jocks to win approval? Because of the two of them who do you see as a more jock-like figure? Helen hands down for me!

    Had they not gotten the world cup, or had they said let’s leave the stadiums as they are you people would be bitching about them not helping things outside their own sphere of interest. Helen is well documented at not liking rugby and yet she’s going out of her way to see that we have a shit hot stadium.
    Stop your bitching, that Jafa Box looked hot.

    All we need is Aucklanders to stop being so apathetic and actually show up to some games.

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  4. iiq374 () says:

    Helen is well documented at not liking rugby and yet she’s going out of her way to see that we have a shit hot stadium.

    No Helen is going out of her way to see that less Rugby is played on her back doorstep.
    And doesn’t care how much of our money it takes her to do it.

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  5. phillip john () says:

    Anyone actually know what advantages this stadium would have over the proposed upgrade to Eden park?

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  6. casual watcher () says:

    David C

    You are right about Aucklanders being apathetic and disinterested in their city – I am ex Wgtn but now a Jafa and always admire how well things are done in Wgtn re development in the city. But…. just because the city is boring it does not mean that we need a hoary great white elephant stadium on the waterfront.

    I am very nervous about a concept that emerged as a distraction to the deep shit Labour were in 4-6 weeks ago with their validating legislation. Now it is being presented as a fait accompli and you have no sense of patriotism or commitment to the RWC if you do not agree with it. That is BS in capitals and David is right – the fundamentals of good decision making are completely missing. It will be a $1b fuck up and neither Auck nor NZ needs it. The linkage to “economic tranformation” is the best clue you could have as to what this is all about.

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  7. Nick () says:

    Well, doh! What else do you get when you let professional bureaucrats near any decision?

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  8. David C () says:

    I say f*ck it, it’s a bloody good idea.

    Eden Park is looking bloody old and shabby these days – not dissimilar to Athletic Park towards the end of her life, may she rest in peace – and we do need a stadium that size somewhere. Yeah the process may be a bit f*cked but there are a number of you who complain about how PC we all have to be and how the Government takes too long to sort this out and how as a right wing libertarian we should have small government participation. Well they’re pretty much removing due consultation. You can’t have it both ways.

    It sounds naff but there will be a lot of eyes on NZ come 2011/2012 for the Rugby and Cricket world cups, it’ll be good not to make us look like country bumpkins.

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  9. SB () says:

    The way I see it Eden Part has access problems that are unsolvable.

    The Waterfront has timing problems that are unsolvable so what do we do?

    I tend to believe that no taxpayer money should be spent on this. If the rugby people want this then they should fund it.

    I just can’t see it bringing in all the business that its promoters say it will.

    Other places I have lived have tried similar things, they have always required permanent tax payer subsidies as they have never made enough money to pay their costs.

    SB

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  10. side show bob () says:

    Do have to agree with you David C, while jafas can be nice people they also act like very spoilt children at times. Heard some talkback last night, jafas ringing up and moaning they have had no power for a few hours, for fucks sake what a useless bunch of tossers hate to see them try and survive outside their precious city.
    The same can be said for their support for sport, they make a big noise about their rugby and league teams but no one shows up to watch them. Look what happened to the v8s, they couldn’t plan a root in a knock shop.
    Auckland may have the largest population in NZ but they also appear to have the greatest amount of apathy but by God the rest of the country better take them seriously or they get really pissed off.

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  11. GPT () says:

    Philip John – advantage over Eden Park upgrade is that we get a purpose built, large capacity, world class stadium with greater access to public transport and out of a residential area.

    Sporting events can actual go beyond 10pm for example.

    I suspect the thinking of the govt is along the lines of – if there is going to be a massive input of public money let’s do it properly.

    Given the success of the central Wellington stadium I am hopeful that a similar concept will work in Auckland.

    DPF identifies some concerns although in relation to sporting bodies and sponsors I suggest ‘build it and they will come’ applies.

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  12. Whaleoil () says:

    What you plonkers inside the beltway forget is there is “Auckland” and there is Auckland, Waitakere, Northshore,Papakura, Manukau, Rodney, Franklin City Councils all of which are bigger on their own than puny little old Wellington that if it didn’t have BIG Government would be a decidedly pathetic little backwater. Oh and don’t moan to me about Hutt City, Porirua etc, they still don’t even come close to Manukau.

    Further over half of New Zealands population lives north of taupo.

    http://www.bigcities.govt.nz/pdf/People.pdf

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  13. mikeybill () says:

    It will be a massive white elephant. Auckland has far more pressing needs (an inner city rail loop for one). Spending this money on a vanity project that will hardly be used is absurd.

    User pays – let the NZRFU and IRB pay for Eden park.

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  14. David C () says:

    What the hell is your point whaleoil?

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  15. Whaleoil () says:

    A waterfront stadium is simply Labour’s weapon of mass distraction to divert attention from all else that ails the country…like unemployment growing, massive strikes in the health sector, strikes at TVNZ.

    The only thing wrong with Eden park is that it is far too close to Helen’s house. It would be cheaper if she moved and we built the stadium there like what was planned all along…..but oh no we have to have secret politicians meetings deciding on something they shouldn’t have come within a barge pole of.

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  16. Craig Ranapia () says:

    DPF identifies some concerns although in relation to sporting bodies and sponsors I suggest ‘build it and they will come’ applies.

    Grant, with all due disrespect, you do realise Field of Dreams is fiction? And I don’t recall the scene where Mr. Costner went to Washington and got a pork barrel rider put on an appropriations bill.

    For all the frothing about ‘selfish JAFFAs, who picks up the tab if they build it and they don’t come? Let’s see who starts bitching and moaning when it turns out, yet again, that it’s pretty expensive to feed a white elephant.

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  17. brian_smaller () says:

    David – perhaps you don’t remember the Thorndon Rsident’s Association and that prat who cost the stadium builders about $20m in overruns because of their objections. They wanted to make a 45,000 seat, two tier stadium initially but were blocked. Those prats also got the walkway from the stadium concourse to Thorndon Quay removed from the build, so if you park down there you have to walk all the way to the railway station and back to the stadium. Try that with kids after a night game of rugby.

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  18. sonic () says:

    For goodness sake guys, if a smaller city than Auckland, like Glasgow can have three all seated stadiums of over 50,000 capacity and an even smaller UK city like Liverpool can manage two surely we can build one.

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  19. brian_smaller () says:

    And did you see the design – it looked like our Cake Tin. How about a uniquely Jafa design that will associate the image with Auckland? Trouble is, not enough time to have a decent design contest so they will go for the copy. I tend to agree with the statement above about roots in knocking shops and planning ability.

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  20. SB () says:

    How many of you have actually been to Eden Park when something is on? The transport system gridlocks nothing moves faster than a snail.

    I know people who park approx 4Km away and then walk in because its impossible to get closer.

    If you increase the capacity without increasing the transport capability then it will simply be worse.

    The roads around the Park are just normal suburban streets. They are very busy just on a normal day.

    SB

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  21. Craig Ranapia () says:

    brian_smaller wrote:

    Don’t worry, our very own Harry Potters know the magic words to make the RMA and Auckland City’s own planning regulations invisible – “Rugby World Cup! Enabling legislation, ya pooftahs!” :)

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  22. insider () says:

    The problem is this is hugely rushed and we know that rushed decisions by govt usually end up costing a lot of money and that the timeline is tight because there are bound to be some engineering issues coming out of the woodwork on a new ( and potentially unstable) site. Look at the problems Wembley has had on an existing site.

    Stadiums do not make money – they sucj it up and the tourism benefits tend to be mythical. Look at Wellington – it can still hardly pay the interest bill on the stadium out of event revenue.

    Basically we need to accept that any money put into a stadium is written off and hope revenue covers operating and maintenance costs.

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  23. SB () says:

    I think its nice that the whole of New Zealand will be paying tax’s for a resource that will mainly be used by Aucklanders. Any economic benefit will mainly remain in Auckland so thanks NZ for that.

    Remember that this will be a 1000 Million project with cost overruns included. Revenue from projects like this takes some time to build up so it will also require a subsidy for the first 10 or so years of approx $50 mil a year.

    SB

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  24. David Farrar () says:

    Brian – as a Thorndon resident I am livid against that walkway being removed. If it was still there I could get to and from the stadium in five minutes max!!

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  25. Blair () says:

    I think you have to look at this in terms of return on investment. The question is: Will the world cup generate an extra billion dollars in ordinary tax revenue?

    My guess is that it might generate a couple of hundred million, which would justify government investment in an existing stadium, but probably not a fresh one. Does anyone know if there is a projected estimate of revenue available?

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  26. insider () says:

    “For goodness sake guys, if a smaller city than Auckland, like Glasgow can have three all seated stadiums of over 50,000 capacity and an even smaller UK city like Liverpool can manage two surely we can build one.”

    Sonic we don’t have their tribal travelling cultures that can fill those stadiums for 20+ weekends a year – how often do the blues fill EP or Auckland in the NPC? Westpac stadium was maybe half, three fifths filled for the NPC quarter final against Canterbury – one the best games of the season. While cities like Liverpool might be smallish they likely have much larger hinterlands for them and opposition supporters. I mean the whole world supports Liverpool don’t they?

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  27. SB () says:

    Also don’t forget that approaching completion alongside the waterfront site is the Vector Arena.

    Using their own words

    “Auckland’s Vector Arena is a multi-purpose, technically sophisticated facility that will cater for large and small events. It will seat up to 12,000 for events ranging from international netball and basketball to family shows, opera, rock concerts,business events and exhibitions.

    Along with large scale concerts and events the arena can also operate as a lyric theatre or intimate concert venue.

    Vector Arena will also incorporate a tavern and restuarant which will be open to the public 7 days a week. ”

    So any event that was less than 12,000 like a concert would tend to go there rather than a vast 60K seat venue. This will tend to reduce the number of events that the waterfront stadium could tender for.

    SB

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  28. Pita () says:

    If you’d all just pause for a moment, take your hands of your sticks, take a deep breath and consider this:

    Sydney, population 4 million

    telstra dome: capacity 80,000 average attendance 40,000 and 35,000 for 2004/2005 respectively…more events, fewer bums on seats.

    Profitability: $4 million in 2004 and $496,000 in 2005 …after asset write up of $11.2 million and $6.8 million respectively.

    Millenium stadium in Wales is showing 13 events for 2007

    Auckland needs another stadium (North Harbour/Eden Park/Erikson) like we need more politicians. New Zealand will be paying for Helen’s profligacy for generations to come.

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  29. sonic () says:

    Insider, I see your point however I bet U2 could fill it, the Rolling Stones, the All Blacks in a big match.

    It’s got to be better for the CBD to have this than more grotty apartments.

    Lets go for it I say, it faces problems and will not be easy but we could do with some vision rather than just the partisan carping we have all been engaged with over the last few months.

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  30. bwakile () says:

    It looks like we are going to get a new stadium. My concern is that placing such a huge structure on the waterfront will be out of proportion. Waterfronts are precious. Imagine what Darling Harbour would be like with the MCG in the middle of it. The olympic site at Homebush was successful because of the train and bus links. We should be looking for a similar scenerio here, North harbour or the Avondale site.
    Can anyone also explain what Labour’s “economic transformation” plan actually is as I don’t get it?
    As an aside, from memory they spent the entire original budget of around $100m for the Sydney Opera House just getting the foundations in, such is the joy of building major stuctures near water.

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  31. Craig Ranapia () says:

    Sonic wrote:
    For goodness sake guys, if a smaller city than Auckland, like Glasgow can have three all seated stadiums of over 50,000 capacity and an even smaller UK city like Liverpool can manage two surely we can build one.

    It’s call premiere division football clubs with deep pockets and very big egoes, Sonic. And, to be honest, if they’re getting corporate welfare hand over fist from the suckers… sorry, I mean the good citizens of Glasgow and Liverpool I don’t really care.

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  32. Ed Snack () says:

    Well, as an (ex) Aucklander who has lived for some years a biscuit’s toss from Eden Park, and latterly just a bit further away, I suggest a good many commenters are talking through their hats.

    There are no access problems that couldn’t be solved as part of a significant upgrade. Appropriate work on the rail connection (dedicated loop siding ?), bus connections, a decent parking plan plus a parking structure, and it would probably be better than downtown. Downtown roads are aready seriously constrained and serve an important commercial segment, plus this is a terrible waste of prime space on the waterfront.

    The prime problem would appear to be the effects on residents plus the issue of ownership & control.

    I would support using the Carlaw site as an alternative. That strikes me as a good spot, but has no parking. It would require a small intrusion to the domain as well, so there may be issues over that, but you could integrate a railway link.

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  33. Pita () says:

    Sonic: For the record…Glasgow population 600,000, greater Glasgow 1.8 million.
    Liverpool 440,000, Merseyside 1.5 million.

    My point being; take away Waitakere, Northshore,Papakura, Manukau, Rodney, Franklin…and Auckland is left wth sweet FA

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  34. andrew llewellyn () says:

    Carlaw park!

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  35. sonic () says:

    “ake away Waitakere, Northshore,Papakura, Manukau, Rodney, Franklin”

    And how many of them visit the CBD every week?

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  36. Inventory2 () says:

    What I want to know is whether enough research has been done in the last eight weeks with regard to the waterfront site. I was seriously concerned today to hear an Engineer quoted who reckoned it would take four years for the site and ground to be sufficiently stable for building to START! Do we have that much time? I somehow doubt it.

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  37. Peter Cresswell () says:

    “Carlaw Park!”

    Yes, I agree.

    :-)

    PC

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  38. AGJ () says:

    This waterfront stadium has all the hallmarks of FUBAR.

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  39. insider () says:

    There was a very funny sketch on Radio Sport months ago just after the cup award when they have these two imitation loud mouth Aussie sports commentators discussing issues of the day. The punchline was that as with the previous world cup we shouldn’t worry about upgrading Eden Park and clean stadiums and corporate box holders because we wouldn’t be able to get our act together anyway, and the final will still be in Sydney.

    Wonder what they knew….

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  40. AGJ () says:

    This waterfront stadium has all the hallmarks of FUBAR.

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  41. Stu () says:

    Sonic – you say “Insider, I see your point however I bet U2 could fill it, the Rolling Stones, the All Blacks in a big match.”

    How many times have U2 been here in the last twenty years – 3 times? Rolling Stones? Not many either. The fact is, we don’t get many acts here that need a large stadium. We have the Big Day Out once a year, and then usually maybe one more. All the other acts tend to be smaller. A new stadium is going to be a white elephant, and Auckland doesn’t need to pay for it.

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  42. Stu () says:

    Sonic – you say “Insider, I see your point however I bet U2 could fill it, the Rolling Stones, the All Blacks in a big match.”

    How many times have U2 been here in the last twenty years – 3 times? Rolling Stones? Not many either. The fact is, we don’t get many acts here that need a large stadium. We have the Big Day Out once a year, and then usually maybe one more. All the other acts tend to be smaller. A new stadium is going to be a white elephant, and Auckland doesn’t need to pay for it.

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  43. andrew llewellyn () says:

    “”Carlaw Park!”

    Yes, I agree.”

    I know, I said it after visiting your site :)

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  44. Jeff () says:

    Maybe we don’t get as many big acts because we don’t have the venue to hold them.

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  45. Peter Cresswell () says:

    “”Carlaw Park!”

    Yes, I agree.”

    I know, I said it after visiting your site :)”

    Hahaha. This must be what’s called a feedback loop. ;^)

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  46. andrew llewellyn () says:

    “Maybe we don’t get as many big acts because we don’t have the venue to hold them.”

    Ta daaah! we have a winner!. Step up to the podium Jeff, to receive your prize!

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  47. dmw () says:

    The problem is politicians unilaterally spending other people’s money (ie taxpayers) on something that is not their concern. And looking for any excuse to downgrade Eden Park because it is in Helen’s back yard.

    Who was there first — Eden Park or the residents living nearby? It is Western Springs speedway all over again, with the neighbours dictating what the sporting arena can and cannot do — even though they moved into the area, knowing the stadium was already there.

    Personally, I don’t like Eden Park. I much prefer North Harbour Stadium, because the seating is closer to the action. And it could be upgraded to 60,000 seats for a fraction of the cost of any of the other proposals. Nearby there is a major bus terminal and motorway (which will have TWO motorway routes to the city by 2011, even if the tightwads in Wgtn want to put tolls on one of them).

    The waterfront stadium is a disaster and a distraction, and should not happen.

    Why are the Labour party allowed to spend taxpayers money, without a mandate from parliament (or the people), on such a plan?

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  48. Peter S () says:

    I heard a great quote from the General “Stormin Norman”.

    Something along the lines of “Amateurs talk about tactics, professionals talk about logistics.”

    As ususal the govt has approached things from the back end. They have decided they want an edifice to themselves on the waterfront, and are looking at ways to justify it, and to make it possible.

    The problem needs to be approached from the people end. For a stadium to work you need to be able to get people there, meaning trains or busses for a proportion, and good roads & for the rest.

    Next you need physical space for the stadium, people unloading areas (for public transport), and huge amounts of parking space.

    If the infrastructure is going to be a problem, then the whole project is going to be a problem.

    The ideal solution would be a greenfields site- somewhere with no existing infrastructure at all, so that things could be custom built from scratch- new roads/rail carparks etc.

    The closest site to the greenfields one has to be Albany. Avondale race course would be a near second.

    Anyone that knows the CBD will tell you that the place is a gridlock for about 70% of every day. The infrastructure is not up to having the stadium there, and there is no space to improve the infrastructure enough.

    As someone who used to live in Auckland, I can say that I never used to go into the centre unless I had to, because A: getting in and out is a time consuming nightmare and B: finding a parking place when you do get there can be expensive and difficult. Even before NZ even got the rights to the world cup, if I had been asked to rate the best places not to build a stadium, the waterfront would have been right there at the top.

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  49. dmw () says:

    Can you imagine the impact on the current traffic situation if you add a $1 billion construction project to downtown Auckland?

    Absolutely nuts.

    (Absolute monkeys.)

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  50. andrew llewellyn () says:

    “Why are the Labour party allowed to spend taxpayers money, without a mandate from parliament (or the people), on such a plan?”

    It’s a calculated risk, presumably aucklanders will welcome this, and not too many from outside the area will resent it.

    they’ll be hoping that the fervour for the world cup outweighs any resentment anyway.

    And they’ve backed themselves into a corner.

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  51. Matt () says:

    I have read so much bullshit on this, construction costs bla bla bla – akl is a big city, we have several major building sites at any one time – eg Vector stadium and about 20 apartment buildings plus more…

    so much small mindedness…with questions like “what advantages will the new stadium have over Eden Park” – iiq374. Good god pass me the cone…

    We are gonna build something for all of nz to be proud of.. and you little people will think, “wow, cool…” so don’t be so scared you little lambs

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  52. John () says:

    I’m with whale oil. It’s time we got Bainimarama down here to invade the beltway and secure these weapons of mass distraction before they destroy the Auckland waterfront.

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  53. gd () says:

    The waterfront stadium bought to you by the government who are very concerned about climate change Climate change that the experts say will cause the sea levels to rise 20ft in the future. Oh well the stadium will at least made a good water polo venue.

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  54. sonic () says:

    Er, you do not believe in climate change gd. Did you not say

    “This is about the command and control mentality of the communists who seek to force the workers out of their cars and onto public transport”

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  55. anonymouse () says:

    According to Mallard it will,

    * double as a cruise centre for visiting ships

    * be translucent

    * have tiers of retractable seats so that the pitch could be expanded to house one day internationals.

    * could be partly funded through Lotteries Commission-run events in which people could win lifetime tickets to the stadium.

    Gawd, can we have a monorail with it too, :(

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  56. andrew llewellyn () says:

    “which people could win lifetime tickets to the stadium”

    Which will not be valid for world cup games.

    but anyway, I have no problems with a new stadium, we’ll use it, and we’ve apparently promised one to the IRB.

    I think that the waterfront site though, might pose enough problems of its own.

    We’ll see – we should not be too negative in any case.

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  57. Inventory2 () says:

    Just reading Mallard’s announcement (or should that be pronouncement) on the Herald website – the text says “It will require the driving of 1900 piles on which a concrete platform will then be placed. That will cost $80 million to $100 milion. Fletcher Construction are the builders and up to 1300 workers will be needed.”

    What the?? If the government hasn’t already decided on this, how can they have already decided on the builder? What about a tendering process? I’m sorry, but for a project of this magnitude, and its critical importance to the success of the Rugby World Cup, a unilateral decision like that is not good enough!

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  58. Captain Crab () says:

    Who will build it? None of the construction firms in NZ have any capacity left. They are all flat out (the big ones obviously). Has labour actually spoken to any firms? I bet they will regret not keeping those building apprenticeships going.

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  59. virginblogger () says:

    Intersting that you didn’t mention the NZ Herald stated Mallard “was prepared to rewrite various laws to clear the way for the development”
    now there’s a surprise…..this government has no regard for the law

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  60. Serum () says:

    —-“Helen is well documented at not liking rugby and yet she’s going out of her way to see that we have a shit hot stadium”—-

    Historically it is well documented that Helen, having disregard for basic road rules and the consideration of other road users, was transported with law breaking speed and gusto in a gas guzzling limousine convoy to a rugby game in Christchurch.

    It is with similar inconsiderate disregard to public opinion, practical considerations, economic sense, and zealous pursuit of a monumental white elephant, that Helen and the now alloyed Mayor of Auckland are speeding on their way to implementing a waterfront folly.

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  61. Inventory2 () says:

    >

    Captain Crab – see my post just above yours! Mallard has already disclosed that Fletcher Construction will be the builders

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  62. Captain Crab () says:

    oops , just saw the Fletchers announcment but is that piling only?

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  63. Inventory2 () says:

    Who would know – but obviously a deal has already been struck, even though there has not been an official decision to go ahead. I wonder if Kebvin Brady’s antennae are twitching over the “tender process”!

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  64. Matt () says:

    Yes just the piling at this stage. Although, the Fletchers guy said they have several large projects completing over the next 3-4 months and will have the labour capacity available when work is due to begin, May 2007. He also pointed out their past expertise and relationships built specificly referring to the Westpac Stadium, Sky City and Te Papa.

    So it seems as though Fletchers will have a jump on the field – so what… according to several here there would be no contenders…these will be the same tossers now complaining of the lack of a fair tender process!!!

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  65. Inventory2 () says:

    My beef is not so much the tendering process Matt, but the lack of openness by the government. If they have made the decision to proceed on the waterfront, fine, let’s get on with it – but not stuff around and pretend that it’s not yet a done deal.

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  66. gd () says:

    sonic what Im am saying is the gumint is trying to have it both ways. 1. They support climate change. 2 They will build a stadium where the experts they support say will be flooded by climate change.

    By their own addmission they are building a stadium that will under water.

    How clever is that?

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  67. gd () says:

    sonic what Im am saying is the gumint is trying to have it both ways. 1. They support climate change. 2 They will build a stadium where the experts they support say will be flooded by climate change.

    By their own addmission they are building a stadium that will be under water.

    How clever is that?

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  68. gd () says:

    sonic The gumint support the concept of climate change. The climate change experts say sea levels will rise 20ft. So why the hell build a stadium at present sea levels if they really believe in climate change. Or maybe just maybe they dont actually and its all just a big tax grab and a scam.

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  69. sonic () says:

    Looks like they are saying they took advice from Fletchers, which seems fair enough.

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  70. Jeff () says:

    I have to say I was leaning toward Carlaw Park being the better option but have been swayed back to the waterfront by the Weta prodution which is linked to on nzherald story.

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  71. andrew llewellyn () says:

    Ha ha – the weta production… whipped up after the decision was made this morning no doubt (hve to admit I haven’t seen it yet so may be talking through a hole in the proverbial).

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  72. sonic () says:

    Pictures here

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/section/media.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10410109

    Looks good actually.

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  73. Simo () says:

    Uncle Joesph Stalin use to run the glorious homeland in this fashion- nothing has fucking changed!!!!

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  74. baxter () says:

    Well will any liability for damages be imposed on Fletchers if they don’t finish on time and how much.
    The Goverment proposes to pay half the costs. Who is going to own the thing and who will be meeting the running costs and Annual losses. Will Auckland Rugby be free to play at Eden Park or North Harbour after the World cup given that the costs of the smaller stadiums will be considerably less….Come in Sonic and David C I am sure you have the answers

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  75. iiq374 () says:

    Matt – I have *never* said I preferred Eden Park; personally that *is* a worse option than the waterfront. But comparing the worst 2 options out of about 20 doesn’t make the better of the 2 a good option.

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  76. iiq374 () says:

    So – anyone else wonder how much of our money was spent on the Weta “video”?

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  77. toby1845 () says:

    Here’s another point people might like to ponder.

    Fletchers have a long-standing relationship with the labour party. They were the major contractors for state housing in the 30s and 40s, for example, and provided funding to the Party as well. (Bruce Jesson’s ‘The Fletcher Challenge’ refers.)

    By any chnace would thay have made/promised a donation to a major political party during the past few weeks?

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  78. gd () says:

    So much for transparent governance. Dont bother calling for international tenders for a significant project. Dont worry about getting value for money. Just have a chat to the boys and take their price. Its sure to be competitive LOL.After all whats a billion dollars here or there when you waste that amount by morning tea time each day.

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  79. andrew llewellyn () says:

    “So much for transparent governance”

    Hey, don’t look a translucent stadium in the mouth.

    heh heh… there is much that needs explaining about this & I look forward to it being explained.

    Looks a lot less like a bedpan in those pictures though.

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  80. baxter () says:

    Fletcher’s shareprice up 30 cents to a new record and Port Of Tauranga up 10 cents.

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  81. SPC () says:

    I supported expanding Athletic Park. Because of the greater capacity. Now while I was right that the new stadium was too small, I was wrong. They made the right choice.

    If a new stadium is preferred by those in Auckland (a poll of some sort), it’s just a pity that the more optional site is not available by the time construction would need to begin for 2011 (thus I would suggest some check of the facts about this).

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  82. insider () says:

    Design looks good but how long has it been worked on? Is it a concept or a proper design? Location is fine – don’t agree with the greens who say it will ruin views ofthe sea. From where? the 30 storey bulding across the road? the container wharf?

    We also need to understand if the costs are for the shell or the finished item with seats and everything fitted out, screens, roading entrances etc ready for the first game.

    Also note the highlighting of the increase in costs of Eden park and the 500 mumble new stadiumm costs to make that gap seem not that great.

    Another question, if the NZRU are convinced to dump Eden Park, they won;t do it for nothing and the stadium needs them proabably more than the union needs the stadium. WHat deal will they be given to attract them to the new stadium? What impact will that have on revenue projections?

    Like I said before, consider any stadium money a write off.

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  83. kiwi_donkey () says:

    Well, I think they sould build the Bed Pan. Its the vision thing.

    But it is just hilarious that the Ports of Auckland are telling them to piss off. What’s the bet for the leasehold on the airspace? $200m? $25m a year? And it’s not even land – it’s sed bea. Or is it foreshore? On what basis do the Ports have rights of use?

    I smell a glorious theatrical melee of political interference, grandstanding, tangata whennua, money men, brinkmanship, legislation, and the Aussies trying to backstab us again.

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  84. casual watcher () says:

    kiwi donkey

    You are on the button – Mallard has tried to make it sound simple and doable but the realities are a nightmare. Any half wit doing a risk analysis of the waterfront option will end up running a hundred miles. The only people committed a this stage are Mallard(govt) and Hubbard – Mark Binns from Fletchers was very careful with his words and kept deflecting back and saying “govt decision”.

    It is a shame because the concept is good and the mock ups look great. Reality bites when you come back to $$$’s though and realise that we can’t afford a “Roller” – a good Eden Park Honda will have to do !

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  85. Paul Marsden () says:

    The port option is a non-starter. End of story. But I hope the vision remains for another day.

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  86. Paul Marsden () says:

    Now, if the govt could find this kind of money and vision, to help nurture and develop the smaller, manufacturing and export sectors of the NZ economy, then they (we), would reap the rewards at least ten-fold, if not more.

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  87. KB () says:

    WAKE UP, Its time we took a hard look at ourselves, Eden park stadium has reached its end and millions spend on upgrades will only be a cosmetic change.

    The World cup success will depend on efficient transportation and the easy with which spectators can move about, having a water front stadium has this advantage !!

    Local Authorities and Aucklanders have been given two weeks to decide on this issue, I thinks it is time we need to take a step back and think, if we don’t build a new stadium now, we will have to live with Eden park and their terms (Eden park trust) for the next 20 years or more.

    The issue of location and funding were mentioned by Trevor Mallard while management and sponsorship can be looked into more in deeply once a decision is made.

    Go on Aucklanders what happened to the CAN DO attitude !!!

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  88. KB () says:

    WAKE UP, Its time we took a hard look at ourselves, Eden park stadium has reached its end and millions spend on upgrades will only be a cosmetic change.

    The World cup success will depend on efficient transportation and the easy with which spectators can move about, having a water front stadium has this advantage !!

    Local Authorities and Aucklanders have been given two weeks to decide on this issue, I thinks it is time we need to take a step back and think, if we don’t build a new stadium now, we will have to live with Eden park and their terms (Eden park trust) for the next 20 years or more.

    The issue of location and funding were mentioned by Trevor Mallard while management and sponsorship can be looked into more in deeply once a decision is made.

    Go on Aucklanders what happened to the CAN DO attitude !!!

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  89. Craig Ranapia () says:

    I thinks it is time we need to take a step back and think, if we don’t build a new stadium now, we will have to live with Eden park and their terms (Eden park trust) for the next 20 years or more.

    Or we could end up with our very own version of the Wembley Stadium redevlopment debacle… It certainly is time to take step back and think, because I’ve not noticed much coming from Mallard, Hubbard or the folks who expect taxpayers and the residents of the Auckland region to fall to their knees at the mention of the fucking Rugby World Cup.

    It’s time to stop spinning and start treating the rest of us like walking ATM machines. Is that too much to ask – and if it isn’t, I’ll certainly be taking the opportunity to remind my MP and councillor that they’re up for re-election at some point over the next two years. If they want to be taken seriously, they have two weeks to put up a serious case.

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  90. dmw () says:

    The waterfront stadium is a millstone that the government wants to foist on Auckland, spending our money, again.

    Eden Park or North Harbour Stadium in Albany are both much cheaper alternatives than a new one. Albany in 2011 will be far advanced, with (some parts of) the new western motorway, the northern busway and commercial/retail development by then.

    Far better to upgrade an existing stadium and spend money on Auckland’s infrastructure.

    Why the waterfront? Britomart can only handle 10,000 passengers per hour.

    In comparison, the northern busway will handle 11,000 per hour. After a major event, being off-peak, the buses are not limited to the only using the busway. Similarly, the Harbour Bridge is not a bottle-neck as a combination of its movable median barrier and the new links to the North Western motorway mean the traffic will flow satisfactorily.

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  91. tim barclay () says:

    There is a sub plot to all this and that is what to do with the Ports of Auckland (POA) which really is a blight on the City. Perhaps it is time to merge that operation with the Mount and Marsden Point – which is the only deep water port in NZ apart from Bluff. Both the Mount and the POA require constant expensive dredging operations and there are ships now being currently constructed and on the water that can only go to a deep water port. So let us now put some serious focus on the POA as a useful by-play for the economy and the future of the Auckland waterfront.

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  92. kiwi_donkey () says:

    Mega-Scandal Brewing over the Bed Pan.

    Labour are remarkably gung ho and robust in their approch to this. They do like to lash around gobs of money without any transparency or due process. Like a tender. I wonder if it will come back to bite them. It may turn into festering sore of cost overruns and scandals, dubious political decision making, improper influences, and the abolition of property rights.

    They are already bullying Auckland councils. And what about the Port? Imagine announcing you were going to redevelop your neighbour’s property and they would just have to sell it to you. Mind boggling. Meanwhile, think how much they will annoy the Auckland electorate if the RWC final goes to Auckland. How stupid to take that risk! Hahahahahaha.

    I also like their attitude to the Resource Management Act. Stuff it! We’re the government. That pesky legislation is only for the plebs!

    Oh, this is going to be so entertaining. I’ve got goose bumps already. This may be the nail in the coffin for Labour. Why on earth are they taking this risk?

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  93. iiq374 () says:

    And what about the Port? Imagine announcing you were going to redevelop your neighbour’s property and they would just have to sell it to you.

    Actually Auckland City Council already likes this approach anyway. Have a look at what is happening to the land on Barrack Road that ACC has said will be a park – even though the owner currently has a resource consent in process to build a retirement village…

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  94. iiq374 () says:

    Of course if I lived around Wellington I’d also be baying at the fact that this money suddenly has appeared out of nowhere to fund a stadium that for some reason couldn’t fund transmission gully?

    Or of course early treatment Herceptin funding for 40 years anyone?

    No you’re right, a bed pan is much more important.

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  95. Billy () says:

    The second biggest problem I have with the idea is that it seems like a waste of the harbour. When you are sitting in the stadium you are looking at the field. Neither you nor the people behind the stadium get to see the harbour.

    The biggest problem is that it is going to cost $500m (although how $700m of last week became $500m I do not know).

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  96. Billy () says:

    The second biggest problem I have with the idea is that it seems like a waste of the harbour. When you are sitting in the stadium you are looking at the field. Neither you nor the people behind the stadium get to see the harbour.

    The biggest problem is that it is going to cost $500m (although how $700m of last week became $500m I do not know).

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  97. bluefin () says:

    What the?? If the government hasn’t already decided on this, how can they have already decided on the builder? What about a tendering process?

    Sadly the trend since the Labour govt has come into power,has been away from the competitive tendering process.

    Work on govt projects has been given to companies on the basis of who Labour like and feel comfortable with, rather than on the weighted attributes tender system;e.g Fletchers.

    Anyone wonder why the new prisons and motorway projects have had budget blowouts?

    You don’t give contractors the cheque book, its lke giving an alcoholic the keys to the liquor store. Why do you think Fletchers have made such a profit in the last year?

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  98. mara () says:

    mega scandal brewing over the BED PAN”..I’m with you kiwi donkey.Bring it on!

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  99. Pita () says:

    Did I read right…”the unspeakable Mallard” has give Auckland two week to make up their mind or it goes to Jade?

    I thought the Rugby Union was responsible for the 2011 event…where did I get that idea?

    It seemed so simple before the Government became involved.

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  100. mara () says:

    Please allow me a personal interlude re the bed pan.Centuries ago when I was a kid at school and attempting to achieve something during athletics class,my teacher,a nun,called out loudly….”Jesus Mother and Christ…do you know how ridiculous you look on that apparatus?” Naturally,since this embarrasment I became cautious, then I became and remain deeply cynical about all matters religious or athletic.Now I add politics to my list of major distrust.Heh heh Helen..I will watch the progress of your Monument with great interest.

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  101. meatball () says:

    With Fletchers having the go ahead to work on the stadium,a contract has been formed. So, in essence the work has started.
    I guess the 2 week consultation period is retropective consultation.

    Well said, bluefin. Where there is competition, there is less corruption.

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  102. Jeff () says:

    Yes people inside the stadium will be looking at the pitch, and people inside the Sydney Opera House look at the stage….so what! The plans for the stadium provide wide boulivards and cafes surrounding it and therefore will open up this part of the water front to the public, not close it in. It’s the naysayers whose heads are closed in.

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  103. iiq374 () says:

    Jeff – the point is that for that amount of money we could fully develop either Albany, Jade or a new Stadium next to Slyvia park, make the current “tank farm” into a park area, and still have about $300million left over.

    And it would be less risk with more chance of being finshed on time.

    And wouldn’t need rewriting the RMA

    And wouldn’t need a compulsory sale from the current land owners

    And would be in a position better served by public and private transport.

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  104. warehi () says:

    Kia Ora
    As with litigation one must consider principle and economics in relation to the Stadium.
    Principle and self interest is driving most discussion, but no one I have seen comment, has considered on going cost.
    Neither it seems has anyone considered payback against “investment”, or in fact the cost of maintaining the “asset”.
    You can guarantee that the stadium will be a conservative two to three times the estimated cost.
    No government or government department can do anything cost effectively or properly.
    Look at who we’ve got “driving” it.
    The mincing dwarf, Michael Cullen, the strutting illiterate, Trevor “the duck” Mallard and the revolting Helen Clarke who has never written an invoice in her sad life, and surrounded herself with academia for a lifetime of inconsequence and irrelevance.
    If the waterfront stadium goes ahead they will probably need to get Philip Field to bring in 10,000 Thai workers in an attempt to bring it in on time.
    Even then the prospect of finishing on time will be remote/doubtful/dubious/improbable/slender and probably impossible.
    Let us assume then that the cost will be a conservative $1500 million (forget the $500 or $800 million currently being touted by all those who have something to gain such as Fletchers and the architects) .
    By the way it is interesting that the goverment does not have time to waste on tenders and other “stupid” practises.
    The escalation clauses in the contract will conveniently allow the cost to blow into the stratosphere/troposphere.
    Let us assume that the annual maintenance cost will be 2.5% of the cost.
    So we will be looking at an expenditure of at least $37,500,000 per year plus the salaries of all the drones/losers/f — kwits and dead heads who will be employed in the “administration”.
    (See the smaller scale of gross over indulgence at North Harbour Stadium.)
    Say 1000 no hopers at an average salary of $50,000.
    That is another $50 million a year.
    Then who in god’s name is going to use the stadium.
    Hardly a bloody soul.
    The odd rock concert and a couple of sports events a year.
    Auckland has a population of just over a million.
    What events are going to attract 5-6% of that population to fill the 60,000 seat stadium?
    Remember no one uses North Harbour Stadium and that costs me and all the other poor buggers who pay rates on the
    North Shore, tens of millions a year.
    Finally if 20,000 visitors come to Auckland for the world cup and each spends $5,000, that total is $100,000,000, which won’t go anywhere near covering a fraction of the cost.
    The whole thing is a bad joke, a farce a pain in the arse.
    However, in reality the only real prospect is North Harbour Stadium.
    Even the brainless North Shore Mayor George “where am I” Wood understands that.
    Still what does a third world banana republic like Aotearoa (land of the wrong white crowd ) deserve?
    Fascinating is it not, that Telstra Stadium in Sydney has gone broke with the bank calling in a $190 million loan.
    Tena koe
    Ka Kite Anoo
    Wal Warehi Britton

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  105. Andrew () says:

    warehi – an excellent post. thank you

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  106. Zutroy () says:

    Warehi, I’d read your blog if you had one.

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  107. nissan () says:

    Naming rights are out Aucklands “A hole”.

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  108. J () says:

    Side show bob pretty much summed it up!.
    As for the doom & glooms well…get over it!.
    The “can do attitude” = Stadium = jobs=money & even some good sporting features!!!.
    Positively people! Come on.

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