Taxpayers are being asked to fork out $25 million to help pay for the $165m construction cost of Sir Peter Jackson’s movie museum and Wellington convention centre.
Hard to see a case for significant taxpayer support. Only if we think the museum and convention centre will bring more people to NZ, should support be justified.
The centre and museum will certainly bring more people to Wellington. There is a case for ratepayer support. But will someone fly to NZ just because of the movie museum?
The convention centre will attract conventions to Wellington. But this is probably instead of them being in Auckland or Christchurch. Will it bring conventions to NZ that otherwise would not have occurred?
The project was first budgeted to cost $134m, then increased to $150m and has now grown to $165m, which council documents say is related to changes to the exterior cladding and building design.
I’m keen for the project to succeed, but not at any cost.