Press Release – Auckland Council
Auckland Council will undertake further public consultation on a report on the future of Auckland’s major stadiums prepared by council controlled organisation Regional Facilities Auckland (RFA).
The report was considered by Auckland Council’s Governing Body today. Deputy Mayor Penny Hulse chaired the meeting in Pukekohe. She has welcomed the report as a good starting point which takes account of the needs of Auckland, major sporting codes and local communities.
“Love them as we do, our major stadiums are not currently working as well as they could for Auckland,” says Cr Hulse. “At the moment, none of the current stadiums fully meet the needs of their key users.”
“What we need to do is to meet the needs of the major sports codes and the public into the future while ensuring ratepayers get the best value for their money.
“However it’s important to recognise that what councillors considered today was only a draft strategy which usefully enables further discussion. Nothing is set in stone and we want to hear the views of the sporting codes and the public.”
The RFA report proposes Eden Park as the primary venue for rugby, league and cricket with Mount Smart as a base for league.
It suggests the Western Springs speedway explores moving to Mt Smart while test cricket and local cricket consider Western Springs as a venue long-term.
Mayor Len Brown says he is keeping an open mind on the report. “As a Warriors fan, I would like to see Mt Smart stay the home of league. But I do accept Mt Smart needs substantial extra money spent to achieve the right standard and meet the Warriors’ expectations. Whatever is ultimately decided, we must find the best balance between the needs of different sports codes and their fans, and the best use of limited ratepayer money.”
The report also suggests the RFA works with Eden Park Trust and North Shore Stadium to consider governance arrangements and ways to work together to reduce costs.