As mentioned previously, Governments gobally have pinned their economic hopes on a somewhat Keynesian approach to financial recover, that being essentially more government intervention in the economy, and spend your way out of recession. Both the Australian and New Zealand Governments has signalled that they would be spending large sums on Infrastructure projects among other things. In Australia some of the money targeted for infrastructure spending has specifically allocated ($2m per state) for stadium upgrades. Clearly the Australian government has seen the value in the stadium in the modern built environment, and in the case of Australia, the stadium is part of the identity building process.
So while the opponents of the stadium have suddenly developed rather strange bedfellows (yes that famous climate change denier and libertarian Rodney Hide), and gone running to the ‘hall monitor’ of Parliament, others have made considered approaches to the somewhat less dogmatic ideologue Bill English. It would be fantastic if the government could see that stadiums have such an important role to play in how Kiwis define themselves, and fund us accordingly.
From the ODT Sat 20 Dec 2008
Having set a goal of supporting development and infrastructure projects during the election campaign, the Government is “expecting the call” from Dunedin stadium bosses looking for funding, deputy prime minister Bill English says.
Mr English said in Queenstown yesterday no money had been set aside for the stadium project, but indicated it might sit within the criteria for “top priority projects” the Government was looking to fund.
“We expect we will be approached over the shortfall.”
While it has been announced the Government will be shelving plans for some larger projects, he said infrastructure-type funding would be available.
“The top priority projects will be the ones that will lift productivity in the community.”