SH88 realignment: Are ratepayers buying the land twice?

The Dunedin City Council is still waiting to confirm land purchases. Carisbrook Stadium Trust has been buying up some of the ‘necessary’ land – oh, and there is an agreement in place “for the trust to sell it to the council at the price at which it was purchased”. So wait a minute, DCC funds CST to buy the land, then has to buy it back from CST?

Surely, I have made a mistake? Although, I’m not the kind of person who would ever understand high finance. Small question: WHO is clipping the ticket here, and for what profits? The ‘good’ burghers of Dunedin – the very tight few – have some extraordinary explaining to do. That rhymes.

The ‘few’ names are apparent via the New Zealand Companies Office register.

### ODT Online Wed, 24 Feb 2010
Construction due to start on bridge
By Mark Price
Construction work is ready to begin in the next few days on the new bridge over the Water of Leith that will carry State Highway 88 past the new Forsyth Barr Stadium. Dunedin City Council general manager city environment Tony Avery said yesterday the first step would be to drive piles for the bridge.
Read more

Post by Elizabeth Kerr

5 Comments

Filed under Construction, CST, Design, DVML, Economics, People, Politics, Project management, Site, Stadiums, Town planning, Urban design

5 responses to “SH88 realignment: Are ratepayers buying the land twice?

  1. Russell Garbutt

    An interesting subject this.

    The CST came into being with no cash, but got their money from, as I understand it, the DCC – amongst others. Although it is not at all clear that the ORC or the CTO have actually provided any cash yet. They then went about purchasing the land for the stadium at about 3 times the going rate from, in the main, a few entities. The main ones were Maxton Holdings, Calder Stewart, East Parry Investments and Fonterra. There were 6 parties that received relocation costs in addition to the above named entities. “The aggregated price for the Awatea land is $37.5m.” These facts are from the DCC under the LGOIMA and are dated the 3rd February, 2010. Observers can quickly and easily see who the Directors and Shareholders of these entities are by searching at http://www.coys.co.nz/

    If it is true that the CST purchased a significant amount of additional land that they didn’t need for the rugby stadium but was needed for the SH88 diversion, then it seems that this is in addition to the sum above as the information received under the LGOIMA doesn’t mention any land purchases for SH88 acquisitions.

    What does need clarification is whether there is any credit created within the books of CST or DVML on the transfer of any land purchased by the CST and then “sold” to the DCC for the purposes of the SH88 diversion. Would it not be nice to be able to know what land has already been purchased for SH88 and from whom and where this appears in any accounts?

    We already have seen that the CST can view what the rest of us would see as operational income being able to be seen as capital donations, so it seems that we should also be wary of what this looks to be.

    {LGOIMA = Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act -Eds}

    • Elizabeth

      Russell asks: Would it not be nice to be able to know what land has already been purchased for SH88 and from whom and where this appears in any accounts?

      A title search for the subject properties indicated in realignment plans provided for the Notice of Requirement would be a safe start for anyone wanting to know more.

      They can go further with their search into the surrounding area. It’s *quite* interesting.

  2. Stu

    Interesting that they are going ahead without completing land purchases. We’ll see if that meets the definition of “reckless” later on…

  3. Russell Garbutt

    Sort of like starting a building without buying the land first. Imagine what that does to your bargaining position – but I think that is the last thing going through the “minds” of those driving this project.

    Must do a search sometime on the dates when this land was purchased by the current vendors. Maybe someone already has?

  4. James

    Must do a search sometime on the dates when this land was purchased by the current vendors. Maybe someone already has?
    East Parry largely between July 2004 and March 2005 (but this land is east of the stadium, possibly in the path of the realignment).

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