Leggett’s plans for Wellington

The Dom Post reports:

Mayoral candidate wants Wellington to be the home of a national sports museum, and at the forefront of developing virtual reality technology.

Leggett announced the first steps of his “capital comeback” plan to about 200 people at his campaign launch on Wednesday night at the Royal Port Nicholson Yacht Club.

With wife Emily at his side – just hours before she was due to give birth to their first child – the two-term Porirua mayor explained his reasons for wanting Wellington’s mayoral chains instead.

If elected, he promised to put an end to the “bickering” and “palace politics” that were holding the current council back.

He also promised to throw his support behind a proposal for a national sports museum, involving partnerships with central government, Te Papa and all sporting codes.

He did not see it replacing the national rugby museum in Palmerston North or the sports hall of fame in Dunedin.

But the recent fracas over Te Papa bidding $122,500 at auction for a Peter Snell singlet later turned out to be a fake sealed the need, in Leggett’s mind, for a sports museum in Wellington.

“The Snell singlet thing showed there wasn’t a mechanism to secure taonga that is important to our sporting history,” he said. “Wellington is the capital, and we’ve got to start owning national culture.”

Leggett said he would also work with Wellington’s top businesses and researchers to establish the country’s first national virtual and augmented reality complex.

It would be a facility that supported those developing such technology in areas such as film, video games, design and medicine.

The national virtual reality centre and sports museum would become major new drawcards for Wellington, providing a significant boost to the economy by creating jobs, export opportunities and increasing tourism, he said.

He also announced his desire to create a new pathway between Te Papa and the National War Memorial.

It would carve its way through the city’s cultural, sporting and entertainment precincts, and feature plaques commemorating the service of Victoria Cross recipients.

All sound worthwhile proposals, but would like to know the cost and how they’ll be funded.

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