Tag Archives: Stop the Stadium

Stadium costs $23.4144 million per annum

Received from Bev Butler
Thu, 26 Jun 2014 21:43:05 +1200

Cover note:
According to the latest DVL/DVML six monthly reports the debt is growing not reducing – that is a concern. The $146.6 million debt was passed over to DVL, many millions were poured into servicing the interest and capital repayments for this debt but even with that happening the combined short term/long term debt of DVML/DVL now stands at $157.6 million – $11 million more! The long term debt of $146.6 million has been reduced to $138.8 million but short term debt stands at $18.8 million. It is a major concern that the combined debt is growing not reducing – and this is during the stadium’s honeymoon period.


From: Bev Butler
To: Sue Bidrose; Sandy Graham; Kate Wilson; Richard Thomsom; Chris Staynes; John Bezett; Lee Vandervis; Hilary Calvert; Doug Hall; Andrew Whiley; Mike Lord; David Benson-Pope; Neville Peat; Andrew Noone; Jinty MacTavish; Dave Cull; Aaron Hawkins
CC: Calvin Oaten; Grant McKenzie
Subject: Stadium $23.4144 million per annum
Date: Thu, 26 Jun 2014 21:43:05 +1200

Dear Mayor Cull and Councillors

As a result of further discussions and more information obtained through further searching Council documents Calvin Oaten and I have updated the annual stadium costs which now stand at $23.4144 million. (See attached word document). No changes have been made to the spreadsheet I sent earlier which I prepared.
There are some costs which have not been included due to the difficulty in quantifying them to the accuracy of which I would be comfortable.

This $23.4144 million figure does not include any payments which may have not been fully transparent through the Council books.
By this I mean that I understand there were approaches by Darren Burden, former CEO of DVML, to obtain payments for bills which DVML were unable to pay but which another Council Department had shown some willingness to transfer their surplus unspent funds from that Department to DVML. In that particular case, I understand the transfer did not happen. However, I have no access to information as to whether this had occurred on previous occasions through other departments.

█ Also attached are Terry Wilson’s calculations coming from a different angle but which come to $23.1 million per annum. (See attached spreadsheet prepared by Terry Wilson).

Yours sincerely
Bev Butler

FB Stadium=Annual Ratepayer Costs=V2 (PDF, 9.47 KB)
Stadium Costs $23.4144 million per annum (DOC, 30.5 KB)

Related Posts and Comments:
2.6.14 Stadium costs ballpark at $21.337 million pa, Butler & Oaten
23.5.14 Stadium | DCC DAP 2014/15 ● Benson-Pope asserts himself
9.5.14 DCC Draft Annual Plan 2014/15 Submission by Bev Butler

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Business, Carisbrook, DCC, DCHL, Democracy, DVL, DVML, Economics, Name, New Zealand, People, Politics, Project management, Property, Site, Sport, Stadiums

Stadium costs ballpark at $21.337 million pa, Butler & Oaten

Received from Bev Butler
Monday, 2 June 2014 4:10 p.m.

Message: During the presentation of my submission on the draft annual plan I was asked by Council to produce the figures to back up my claim that the stadium was costing approximately $20 million per annum. David Benson-Pope made a general statement questioning whether the claims in my submission were correct – though he didn’t elaborate when I asked him. I have followed up the Council’s request and the final figure is $21.337 million.

Please note there is a huge disparity between what the DCC has published in the Draft Annual Plan 2014/15 and what can be shown by the DCC’s own figures that are very difficult to find and interpret. The ratepayers should not continue to be kept in the dark – the real costs are more than double what is being published.

This has now been sent to the Mayor and Councillors.



From: Bev Butler
To: Sue Bidrose; Sandy Graham; Kate Wilson; Richard Thomson; Chris Staynes; John Bezett; Lee Vandervis; Hilary Calvert; Doug Hall; Andrew Whiley; Mike Lord; David Benson-Pope; Neville Peat; Andrew Noone; Jinty MacTavish; Dave Cull; Aaron Hawkins
Cc: Calvin Oaten
Subject: Stadium Cost $21.337 million per annum
Date: Fri, 30 May 2014 22:49:43 +1200

Friday 30 May 2014

Dear Mayor Cull and Councillors

Attached is a Word document prepared by Calvin Oaten outlining the annual stadium costs. The final figure of $21.337 million is based on figures sourced from and cross-referenced with DCC/DVML/DVL/DCHL documents.
Also attached is a spreadsheet, containing four spreadsheets, prepared by Bev Butler, showing the treatment of the $146.6 million portion of the stadium debt.

Yours sincerely
Bev Butler

Explanatory Note for Calvin Oaten’s Word document:
I have expressly not mentioned nor quantified costs of what I would term ‘collateral’ effects of the Stadium Project. These of course are very real additional financial burdens to the citizens. These are: the realignment of SH88, the forgiving of considerable debt owed the city by the Otago Rugby Football Union, the costs of the purchase and sale of Carisbrook including the holding of same in the interim period. And of course, the ongoing operational losses of DVML’s operations. These particularly are proving to be a continual drag on the financial conscience of the ratepayer. It seems that if council cannot, or will not bite the bullet and raise the “pay to use” level to at least a break even figure then professional rugby is destined to have the last laugh at our expense. It is simply not fair.
I remain, without prejudice
Calvin Oaten

Explanatory Notes for Bev Butler’s spreadsheets:
1. Sheets 1 & 2 titled “$117.541m” and “$29.059m” respectively outline the calculations for the two tranches of stadium debt outlined in the DVL six-monthly report, dated 31 December 2013. This report states that the $146.6m stadium debt has been divided into two tranches of $117.541m and $29.059m. The $117.541m is for a term of 17 years and the $29.059m is for a term of ten years with a weighted average of 6.05%pa. In the calculations I have assumed monthly compounding periods and assumed the first payment(s) were made between 30 June 2013 and 31 December 2013. If the compounding period is shorter then there would be a small reduction in the payments.
Note that in the DVL six-monthly report it states that a mortgage has been issued to pay for the two tranches. This is the first time this has been mentioned in the DVL reports so it is assumed that the mortgage was issued sometime between the last DVL Annual Report (YE 30 June 2013) and the DVL six-monthly report (31 December 2013). There is also mention of a GSA having been signed. I assume this is a General Security Agreement to secure the payment of the debt in the event of the stadium folding or the rental payments not being met. I acknowledge that I am unsure about this as I have no further information. Perhaps the Council staff could clarify this aspect.

2. Sheets 3 & 4 titled “$146.6m monthly” and “$146.6m weekly” respectively outline the calculations for the stadium debt had [regular repayments been made] from the time the stadium opened. It appears from the calculations and the DVL Annual Reports that this was not happening. If it was then the debt would have reduced to approximately $134 million. The DVL long term debt as of 31 December 2013 stands at $141.090m. So up until the mortgage was secured, it appears the debt repayments were for interest only on the bonds (and an average annual capital injection of $2m) which were issued to pay for the stadium land and other stadium debt.


Stadium Costs $21.337 million per annum (DOC, 30.2 KB)
Stadium debt calculations FINAL (XLS, 59.3 KB)

Related Posts and Comments:
9.5.14 DCC Draft Annual Plan 2014/15 Submission by Bev Butler
23.5.14 Stadium | DCC DAP 2014/15 ● Benson-Pope asserts himself

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Business, Carisbrook, DCC, DCHL, Democracy, DVL, DVML, Economics, Name, New Zealand, ORFU, People, Politics, Project management, Property, Site, Sport, Stadiums

Stadium: Edgar’s $1m donation (private sector fundraising)

Received from Bev Butler
Thursday, 10 April 2014 11:31 a.m.

From: Bev Butler
To: Eion Edgar [Forsyth Barr]
CC: Carlotte Henle [Kensington Swan]; Ian Telfer [Radio NZ]; Wilma McCorkindale [Fairfax News]; Debbie Jamieson [Southland Times]
Subject: Has Sir Eion Edgar paid his $1 million donation?
Date: Thu, 10 Apr 2014 11:30:19 +1200

Dear Sir Eion

You will recall the reports in The Mirror (10/7/13 – copied below) where you promised to honour your $1 million pledge initially reported in DScene (13/5/09).
As there had been no public reports of you having paid up I decided a few months ago to make an official request under LGOIMA to see if this money had been received. After repeated requests for the Dunedin City Council to respond to my request I have received no response. I thought before making a complaint to the Office of the Ombudsman I would ask you directly if you have paid up. It is in the public interest that this pledge is honoured as it formed part of the push for the decision for the stadium to go ahead. You may also recall the report on the front page of the ODT (March 2007) where Mr Malcolm Farry announced “very excitedly” that he had a one million dollar donation for stadium construction with another two “in the wings”. This was also reported in the National Business Review.

I have prepared a sequence of events to help clarify the situation:

1. Mr Malcolm Farry announces three $1m donations for stadium construction in March 2007.
2. The Marketing Bureau, commissioned by Carisbrook Stadium Trust, tells Dunedin City Council in Dec 2007 that naming rights are worth over $10m.
3. ODT reports Sir Eion Edgar becomes trustee of CST in August 2008.
4. Edgar and Farry announce Forsyth Barr have signed a Heads of Agreement in Jan 2009 and it is reported in NBR that a “substantial cheque” has been signed.
5. Council documents of cashflow projections, peer reviewed by PwC in Feb 2009, show that the naming rights payments have changed from full payment up front to two years in advance – “front-end loading” is the term for this.
6. Edgar announces in DScene in May 2009 he is making a $1m donation to the stadium.
7. Nine changes, as revealed in LGOIMA response from DVML, are made to the Forsyth Barr naming rights agreement then the contract is signed on 2 August 2011…the day after stadium opens. One of the final changes is from yearly in arrears to monthly in arrears.
8. Forsyth Barr makes their first payment on 1 September 2011. They are paying monthly in arrears.
9. Edgar, through Forsyth Barr lawyer in Oct 2012, denies having stated that Forsyth Barr had written a “substantial cheque”. The NBR journalist distinctly remembers the “substantial cheque” comment being made. However, no correction sought from NBR at the time.
10. The naming rights contract is no more than $5m as revealed in 2013 through LGOIMA request to DVML.
11. Edgar claims his $1m donation is part of the naming rights corporate contract in The Mirror in July 2013. The $1m donation still unpaid. None of the other three $1m donations for construction have been paid.
12. Michael Sidey is paying $1 million as part of the Forsyth Barr naming rights. I think what is happening is “double-counting”. Announcing million dollar donations for construction then two of these donations form part of the corporate contract for naming rights. Either [the] two $1 million payments are donations and the naming rights is only $3m, or the naming rights is $5m and the two [$1 million] donations don’t exist. You can’t have it both ways. This “double-counting” trick is what happened in the STS High Court injunction case where they claimed the $15m grant from Central Government was to offset the private funding shortfall AND was also used to offset the increase in land costs. This “double-counting” trick was established in the Court of Appeal.

So, Sir Eion, have you paid the $1 million donation initially pledged for construction of the stadium? If you have paid $1 million as part of the Forsyth Barr naming rights then good on you. That’s between you and the corporate contract signed by Forsyth Barr. I’m sure Forsyth Barr are happy about that. What is of interest to the public is have you paid the $1 million donation pledged in DScene?

As Chairman/Trustee of a number of Charitable Trusts you will be aware of the definition of a donation as recorded on the Charities Commission website. It bears no similarity to a corporate contract. I have copied Charlotte Henley, Forsyth Barr’s lawyer, into this email so she can confirm this definition, in case you still have any doubts.

I hereby reserve all my rights.

Yours sincerely
Bev Butler

Copied to other interest[ed] media and parties.

Queenstown Mirror 10.7.13 page 1 (detail)
Queenstown Mirror 10.7.13 page 2 (detail)

dscene-13-5-09-page-9-eion-edgar-c3### DScene 13 May 2009
The Insider: Big questions answered
Mr Generous isn’t slowing down

Winter Games NZ chairman Eion Edgar | Interviewed by Ryan Keen
COMMUNITY-MINDED Queenstown-based businessman Eion Edgar, who retired as New Zealand Olympic Committee president last week and left a $1 million donation, on his support for knighthoods, backing Blis and why he’s not slowing down.
#bookmark page 9 | DScene 13.5.09 page 9 (merge)


Related Posts and Comments:
30.7.13 Stadium: Accountability, paper trail leads unavoidably to NEWS
18.7.13 ODT won’t touch Fairfax story
10.7.13 Stadium: Edgar will honour $1M personal pledge to project
3.7.13 [Pulled!] Call for Dunedin stadium cash
24.12.12 A Christmas Tale
7.6.12 Stadium: Forsyth Barr naming rights
6.7.09 Eion Edgar on ‘stadium haters’

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Business, Construction, CST, DCC, DVL, DVML, Economics, Media, Name, New Zealand, People, Pics, Politics, Project management, Property, Queenstown Lakes, Site, Sport, Stadiums

Stadium: Edgar will honour $1M personal pledge to project

KUDOS to Dunedin’s Bev Butler for putting the pressure on !!!

Thanks to Wilma McCorkindale (Fairfax) for professional follow-up

Queenstown Mirror 10.7.13 (page 1)

Queenstown Mirror 10.7.13 (page 1 detail)Queenstown Mirror 10.7.13 (page 2 detail)

#bookmark page 1
#bookmark page 2

DScene 13.5.09 (page 9) Eion Edgar c3### DScene 13 May 2009
The Insider: Big questions answered
Mr Generous isn’t slowing down
Winter Games NZ chairman Eion Edgar | Interviewed by Ryan Keen
COMMUNITY-MINDED Queenstown-based businessman Eion Edgar, who retired as New Zealand Olympic Committee president last week and left a $1 million donation, on his support for knighthoods, backing Blis and why he’s not slowing down. #bookmark page 9

DScene 13.5.09 (page 9) merge

Related Post and Comments:
3.7.13 [Pulled!] Call for Dunedin stadium cash

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Architecture, Business, Construction, CST, DCC, DCHL, DVL, DVML, Economics, Geography, Hot air, Media, Name, ORFU, People, Politics, Project management, Property, Site, Sport, Stadiums, STS

Who? 2010 electioneering

References supplied.

Blog entry: Dave Cull for Dunedin City Mayor
Monday, August 23, 2010 at 2:09 PM
By Dave Cull

Dunedin is wonderful city, with a fantastic future. But right now that future is vulnerable: vulnerable economically, environmentally and socially. Dunedin’s community has never been more disillusioned with how Council makes decisions, how it listens, or not, to the community, how Council takes responsibility, or not, for major spending decisions with long-term consequences. These are consequences that include maxing out Councils [sic] and Council company debt, so that the companies may not be able to pay expected dividends to the ratepayers in the next few years! It is that bad.

The challenges ahead are considerable. But we can achieve that fantastic future. We have to. We can achieve it if we replace secrecy with transparent processes and provide responsible leadership that listens and is up-front with the community about debt and costs. If we do that we can turn disillusion into a shared and inclusive vision for the city.

So imagine what YOU want Dunedin to be like in 20 years.

Imagine Dunedin with:
• a thriving economy featuring high value jobs and businesses that keep families living here
• suburbs of well-built, healthy houses
• streets of beautiful, rejuvenated heritage buildings being put to productive use
• renewable resources being utilized for lower cost energy.
• measures already taken to address climate change and peak oil
• well maintained civic amenities not saddled by a mountain of debt that ratepayers have to repay
• top notch infrastructure including comprehensive Broadband coverage everywhere
• a smooth coordinated public transport system and cycle and pedestrian network
• an accessible and well-protected surrounding environment full of nature’s treasures

Previous Councils and this current one, have not tried to imagine such a future and not planned to achieve it. They have ticked the boxes of bland Council vision statements, reacted to pet ideas dished up by special interest groups, and lurched from one to the next, piling a huge debt on all our shoulders in the process. At the same time some of our suburbs are mouldering from neglect; our digital infrastructure is falling behind other NZ communities; jobs are ebbing away and families are leaving for greener pastures. I and my team want to help turn that all around.
Read more


During the 2010 Dunedin Mayoral race the local newspaper ran this:

### ODT Online Tue, 7 Sep 2010
Mayoral Profile: Dave Cull
By David Loughrey
Dunedin city councillor Dave Cull is about to end his first term on the local authority, and has put his hand up for the council’s top job. With nine candidates, including himself, on his Greater Dunedin ticket, success could see him heading a group with a majority, on a council more recently made up of 15 independents. But he says that would be a good thing for a city that needs a “collegial” approach to reining in debt, and attracting business and people to Dunedin.

Dave Cull
Age: 60.
Family/marital status: Married, two daughters.
Occupation: Writer.
Council experience: One term as councillor.
Running for: Mayor and council.

Why are you standing?
I’m standing because when I put my hand up for council in 2007, I realised it was going to be something I was either going to be in for the long haul or not, so I’m in it for the long haul.
I’m standing for the mayoralty because I see the need for far more engaging and inclusive leadership than is being shown at the moment.

Tell me then, how you would go about engaging and including.
Well I think the context is that the current council and mayor …

Of which you’re one …
… of which I’m one, but the majority has not engaged genuinely, has not listened genuinely to the public, and has, worse than that, not got a cohesive, connected view of the projects the council is involved in. They tend to be isolated from one another, and the impact on one another is not fully appreciated till the negatives hit, I suppose. So I see a need for developing a much more future-focused vision for the city that looks at everything in a connected way.
Read more


Blog entry: Dave Cull for Dunedin City Mayor
Tuesday, September 14, 2010 at 2:02 PM
Ratepayers Association Questionnaire
By Dave Cull

The Greater Dunedin Team Answers Ratepayers Association Questions.

Greater Dunedin candidates declined to answer the Ratepayers Assoc questionnaire, the answers to which are to be published in D-Scene. Framed as either/or questions, the requested yes/no answers would oversimplify the issues with many of the questions. More importantly Ratepayers chairperson Lyndon Weggery acknowledged the Association would edit and “analyse” longer answers and distribute the results privately to Ratepayers Association and ex-Stop the Stadium members. We have no confidence that would be done in good faith. Mr Weggery (also on the committee of ex-STS) has signed STS newsletters containing untrue claims and misrepresentations about Greater Dunedin mayoral candidate Dave Cull’s views on the new stadium, and endorsing another candidate. Dishonesty and partisan commentary are incompatible with a purportedly independent survey.

However all the Greater Dunedin team recognise voters’ interest in our views and their right to hear them expressed publicly. We wholeheartedly promote transparency and also believe our views and positions on most subjects, while diverse, probably resonate with most of the membership of both the Ratepayers Association and what was Stop the Stadium. To that end we have each fully answered the questions posed by the ratepayers Association and posted them on our website: http://www.greaterdunedin.co.nz/. We encourage readers to read them there.
Greater Dunedin’s aim is to engage with and serve the interests and views of the whole Dunedin community. We welcome feedback, ideas, concerns and comments from all.

Following are the Ratepayers Association questions and my answers.
Continues at greaterdunedin.blogspot

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Business, DCC, DCHL, Economics, Hot air, Media, Name, People, Politics, Project management, Stadiums

DScene: Call for full inquiry into stadium project

Register to read DScene online at

### DScene 7.3.12
Open the books (front page)
Anti-stadium campaigner Bev Butler says an audit into the Forsyth Barr Stadium cost should just be the start; she is calling on Dunedin City Council to hold a full inquiry into the project. See page 3. #bookmark

Stadium inquiry demanded (page 3)
By Wilma McCorkindale
Stadium opponent Bev Butler has urged Local Government Minister Nick Smith to initiate a full inquiry into the project. Butler believed an inquiry would prove it simply too expensive to maintain empty and unused. Confidential documents obtained through the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act (LGOIMA) solidify Butler’s determination. She was heartened by the Dunedin City Council decision two weeks ago to commission a review of stadium completion figures by a PricewaterhouseCoopers forensic auditing team. But that wasn’t enough, she said.
{continues} #bookmark


UPDATED 7.3.12 at 7:20 pm
Smell the Delta rat…

{storyline as published today at DScene is under review -Eds}
Delta pursues damages from councillor (page 5)
By Wilma McCorkindale #bookmark

Refer to the following news stories at ODT Online:
14.9.10 Swings hoping to sway voters
16.9.10 Candidate’s advertising sign sparks power cut
18.9.10 Candidates’ sign sites pose risks

UPDATED 8.3.12 at 7:05 pm
—— Forwarded Message
From: Lee Vandervis
Date: Thu, 08 Mar 2012 18:29:15 +1300
To: EditorDscene , “Wilma McCorkindale (STL)”
Conversation: Delta pursues damages from Councillor – misinformation
Subject: Delta pursues damages from Councillor – misinformation

Dear Mike and Wilma,

Delta pursues damages from Councillor – misinformation
I was very disappointed in your 7/3/12 article ‘Delta pursues damages from Councillor’, because of its judgemental presentation of untruths.
The damage done to a power cable by me is only alleged at this point, and did not happen last September as claimed but 18 months ago prior to the last local body election.
The claims that I personally hit a steel peg that pierced the cable and that it exploded are false, as the more accurate ODT articles on the issue in 2010 made clear.
The claim that Delta had heard nothing from me is false as I have verbally invited Delta to produce their evidence when they have rung.
Also false is the claim that my election sign was erected about 20 metres south of the Council designated site, as 2010 ODT photographs show.
If DScene staff had read relevant 2010 ODT reports, or told me what was claimed in this article, this belated misinformation could have been avoided.”

In the interests of accuracy and on-going good relations, I would appreciate you running this letter with similar prominence to the offending article in next week’s Dscene.

Cr. Lee Vandervis

—— End of Forwarded Message

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Business, Construction, CST, DCC, DCHL, Design, DVL, DVML, Economics, Media, ORC, People, Politics, Project management, Property, Site, Sport, Stadiums, STS

D Scene: Dunedin City Council housekeeping

### D Scene 28-7-10

Register to read D Scene online at http://fairfaxmedia.newspaperdirect.com/

Call to liquidate STS (page 3)
By Wilma McCorkindale
[In brief] Dunedin City Council (DCC) has called for the last rites to be said over Stop The Stadium (STS), and applied to have the incorporated society liquidated. The DCC said STS was insolvent, and unable to pay the remaining $9,860.91 court costs owing after STS lost stadium legal battles between the two organisations last year. The application is due to be heard on August 30. STS chairman Dave Witherow said there was nothing fair about the move and STS would defend the action.
{continues} #bookmark

Post by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Economics, Politics, Stadiums, STS

1. STS response – appeal 2. Coastal protection – comments

STS statement re Appeal decision

STS is disappointed with the Wellington Court of Appeal result but pleased the action has forced the Dunedin City Council to admit that what they told the Christchurch High Court was wrong and the Council, NOT the Central Government, are making up the $13 million shortfall.
Read more

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Hot air, Stadiums, STS

Contract signed

### Radio New Zealand News Updated at 4:08pm on 27 April 2009
Dunedin mayor signs contract to build stadium
Dunedin Mayor Peter Chin has signed a contract for the construction of the city’s stadium. The $165 million contract with Hawkins Construction means work can start at the Awatea Street site in May.
RNZ Link


### Channel 9 News April 27, 2009 – 7:24pm
Legal Contract of the Forsyth Barr Stadium signed
The legal contract between the Dunedin City Council and Hawkins Construction for the construction of Forsyth Barr Stadium at University Plaza was signed this afternoon. Mayor Peter Chin put pen to paper during a DCC Extraordinary Meeting today.
Video Link


Construction Contract for the Proposed Forsyth Barr Stadium at the University Plaza – Chief Executive Jim Harland’s report to Dunedin City Council (dated 20 April 2009).

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Architecture, Business, Carisbrook, Construction, CST, DCC, DCHL, DCTL, Delta, Democracy, Design, Economics, Geography, Highlanders, Hot air, Media, Name, New Zealand, NZRU, ORC, ORFU, People, Politics, Project management, Property, Site, Sport, Stadiums, STS, Town planning, University of Otago, Urban design

20 April Extraordinary Meeting of Council: Agenda and Report

Agenda – Council – 20/04/2009 (PDF, 13.5 kb, new window)

Report – Council – 20/4/2009 (PDF, 472.5 kb, new window)
This report identifies progress made in meeting the terms and conditions the Council has set down for construction of the Awatea Street Stadium to be known as the Forsyth Barr Stadium at the University Plaza.

The recommendations in the Report are:

1 That this report is received.

2 That the GMP, including escalation, from Hawkins Construct Ltd of $130,414,595 be accepted noting that the total project cost, including professional fees and adjusted sums is $164,012,035 and that there is an unallocated construction contingency of $1,387,865 for a total construction project cost of $165,400,000.

3 That progress in meeting the Dunedin City Council’s resolution 7 passed at a meeting held on 9 February 2009 which committed the Council to the Awatea Street Stadium project on the following terms and conditions be noted:

7a) Confirmation of Otago Regional Council funding of not less than $37.5 million – This has been confirmed by the Otago Regional Council.

7b) Satisfactory conclusion to the planning process and approval of a Plan Change by the Courts – The appellants have withdrawn their appeals to the Environment Court and the Council has declared the Plan Change operative.

7c) i) The Rates and Funding Working Party continues to identify ways in which the ratepayers contributions to the capital cost of the stadium can be reduced by $20 million providing it comes from sources other than the Holding Company – This is not a requirement to be completed before the signing of the contract.

ii) Discussion and agreement with the ORC occurs on the sharing of any external funding which reduces ratepayer costs – Discussions are underway between the Council’s General Manager Finance and Corporate Support and the Otago Regional Council’s Director Corporate Services.

7d) That Council retains the funding line in the draft LTCCP for the project – The Council has retained the funding line in the draft LTCCP for the project which is consistent with last year when the substantive consultation took place with the community of Dunedin.

7e) That a funding source to meet the $15 million shortfall in private sector funding be confirmed – The Government has agreed to underwrite the $15 million shortfall in private sector funding and discussions are underway to confirm the detail of this arrangement. The Hon Murray McCully is meeting with the Mayor, Deputy Mayor, representatives from CST and officials on Wednesday 15 April 2009 to further progress this.

7f) That the DCC instructs the CST to continue to investigate ways be either:
i) savings on the GMP budget
ii) additional funding over and above the target of $45.5 million
iii) to address the $3 million shortfall of funding from the target of $10 million, from the Otago Community Trust.
The Carisbrook Stadium Trust and its project delivery team are aware of the need to investigate ways to find the $3 million shortfall in funding from the Community Trust of Otago which has been confirmed at $7 million rather than the targeted $10 million and also continuing to raise funding over and above the $45.5 million private sector target.

1 Hawkins Construction Ltd letter of 15 April 2009
2 Layman’s Guide to the Construction Contract from the City Solicitor

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

Leave a comment

Filed under Architecture, CST, Design, Economics, Hot air, Inspiration, Media, Politics, Stadiums

The campaign of lies seems to be working…

So the early results of the stadium survey by two university lecturers opposed to the stadium seem to indicate that the relentless campaign of lies and disinformation by the Stop The Stadium is working.

We’ve heard everything from global warming, ridiculous opportunity costs, university creep, terrorism, bullshit claims of singularity of use, you name it, if it was negative against the stadium it was seemingly valid fodder.

So much of this campaign hasn’t been about the future of Dunedin and the direction that this city should be heading (as should really have been the case), but lies and disinformation about anything and everything that isn’t true or relevant about the development.

You know the only people that will prosper out of this development if it is stopped by spineless Councillors will be the land owners and developers to date. The city will loose and the people will miss out on some of the most marvellous sporting and entertainment opportunities presented to NZ over the next few years.

It doesn’t surprise me at all the survey has gone this way, with the letter a day campaign to the newspaper (sometime printed for god only knows) spreading the lies about the stadium. It’s the classic man in the pub syndrome, of course 90% of the bullshit regurgitated by stadium opponents isn’t true, but repeat it enough without correction and any lie can be believe as true (just ask G W Bush how to run such a campaign). Obviously these people have been studying the methods of that mad man, because any reasoned debate has flown out the window. I mean just last week the letter to the editor complaining about so called University Creep and university not paying rates taking over industrial land. Well open your bloody eyes you insanely stupid trout, the university contributes ONE BILLION DOLLARS to the economy of Dunedin, and considering the manufacturing base of Dunedin is relocating or downscaling at the moment, we need to foster the single largest industry in the cities history. All just smoke screen, bullshit lies and disinformation.

The people of Dunedin do not deserve this place some times and this is a classic case of it.

For pities sake Dunedin don’t let the bloody CAVES win, nobody wins if they do – you all loose.


Filed under Economics, Geography, Hot air, Stadiums


if, and I want to write this in letters several hundred feet high, just to prove how bloody big an IF this is – IF terrorists were to even know that New Zealand was on the map, IF they decided that we’ve pissed someone off to be on the side of their enemies, IF there was a sports event at the new stadium, IF those said terrorists put 1+1 together and come up with Kaboom, if those terrorists were able to plan something this audacious, IF that plan was to slip under the radar of international authorities (we’re not talking some road side opportunist Baghdad bombing), if they were somehow able to get to the UNDERGROUND storage facilities and if the safety mechanisms of those oil and gas facilities was to fail because of said terrorists, then bugger me that’s bad luck.

This isn’t some fantasy of a 12 year old school boy with war and guns on his brain, this is one of the serious scenarios proposed in it’s formal submission to the planning process looking into changing the cities plan to allow for the new stadium development. And they’re proud of it. Sweet Jesus I’m glad I couldn’t make it to the hearings yesterday to hear that shite, I think I would have been either laughing so hard or jeering so loud that either way I would have been thrown out.


Take a good hard look at this lot. Yes it’s getting personal now. These are the people that want to stop something that is going to be so good for so many people. Look long and hard at those faces and think to yourself, yeah, this is the way forward Dunedin, hiding from Terrorists! Continue reading


Filed under Hot air

Dumb and dumber…

The dumb – the questions posed to the Councillors from the Councillors opposed to the stadium development over issues surrounding the stadium. {Thanks to Anne for clarifying this}

The Dumber – Fliss Butcher’s answers. Continue reading


Filed under Hot air, Media

Stadium debate invades trust meeting

I’m all for public accountability, however…

There was a letter in the paper (again, letter a day-athon at the moment), stating that the CST (and Malcolm Farry) must trust and accept the professional opinion of so called critics of the stadium. Which is a little two faced, as the stadium proposal has been put together by professionals, but the StS doesn’t want to accept these professional opinions, only theirs. Continue reading


Filed under Hot air, Media

Massive Protest

OK, I’m being facetious. Good on the 600 people for turning out to the protest today, it was such a nice day for it – first sunshine in 10 days.

But to tell the truth I expected a lot more than .5% of the population of Dunedin to turn out. I was under the impression that this was a defining issue for the city of the likes we’ve never seen before. It’s also been in the media and public domain for nearly 2 years – it’s not as if people don’t know about this development.

So on the one hand I’m being completely dismissive of the piddly turnout, and on the other hand I’m massively relieved that not even 1% of the population could be bothered to turn out for the defining issue for Dunedin and Otago for the last 50 and possibly the next 50 years.

Come on folks, I was under the impression that there was a groundswell of massive public distrust. But .5% of the population on the first sunny and mildly warm Saturday in ages, doesn’t concern me at all. I’m glad that they got to protest and I’m glad for the guys there were 600 there. If the next (?) produces anywhere near 2000 people I’d start to think the public were interested.

Well done on the march, I hope it achieved what you wanted, I’m glad it was such a small turnout.


Filed under Media, Stadiums

Stop the Stadium meeting

Just back from the Stop the Stadium meeting at Burns Room of First Church in Dunedin this evening. Possibly not enough time to go through my notes in detail, however there are a number of issues that I will address this evening. Sorry, couldn’t help myself, this is a long post warning.

In the interest of balance and fairness, I entered the ‘enemy’ territory tonight, to see what all the fuss was about, and report back my take on the evening.

Despite my worries it was a well run and well mannered meeting. This was quite possibly because from what I could tell, I was the only Pro Stadium person in the building. Given the ferocity of some of the ‘open’ speakers at the end of the night, I’m glad I shut up, the evening didn’t need aggravation, not that I would have gone that way.

The only councillor (as far as I could tell) at the meeting from either the ORC or the DCC was Cr Gerry Eckhoff of the ORC, many put in their apologies, and those in favour of the stadium just kept clear.

Those in attendance and spoke were Bev Butler (President), Dr Rob Hamlin (Business School University of Otago), Victor Billot (Vice President and Alliance Candidate), Peter Entwisle (Sts Inc committee member and chair), and Elizabeth Kerr (ex Historic Places Trust), and a full room of what was claimed 200 people (not needing to dispute that).

Peter welcomed everyone for coming, then welcomed Bev Butler as President for an overview of the StS aims and objectives. Excuse the not so succinct summary and paraphrasing here, I hope I have their arguments right, my short hand is non existent, but the pen was going furiously fast.

Sorry long post follows:
Continue reading


Filed under Architecture, Design, Geography, Inspiration, Media, Site, Stadiums

When is a fact not a fact?

(I am loath to get into this debate, for shouting at each other will never achieve anything, however the posts from the anti-stadium people here has been more than reasonable and I feel that we won’t fall into the trap of being offended and start slinging mud at each other)

Quite simply when it is an opinion. This is the case with the fine folk over at Stop the Stadium with the 10 point ‘facts’ of the stadium, that we supposedly didn’t know about. I wish to look at these ‘facts’ and put my spin on them.

1: {opinion} “We predict the real average cost per household is a minimum of $268 per year for 20 years.” This is your prediction, the other side have their own, these are not irrefutable facts, they are opinions based upon assumptions, which as we know in economics is never without ideological bias.

2: {Fact} The escalating cost of steel. “Do you know that the Stadium design has already been modified because of rising costs?” This is a good thing isn’t it. They have demonstrated an ability to be flexible in the face of rising costs (out of anyone but the Chinese quest for development hands). To be able to meet this challenge is a good thing, not a perceived negative ‘fact’. Yes the cost of steel has risen, quite sharply too, but that hasn’t forced the mass closure of developments globally. Indeed, the history of development will always illustrate the costs in historical context. If this stadium was built 20 years ago it would have been half the cost, or if it is built in 20 years’ time, it would possibly cost twice as much. This is never the reason not to do things.

[Update: It has been suggested by the STS that the CST has in fact pre-purchased the steel for the construction. This would suggest that they have signed a set agreed price, akin to locking stock in at a futures market. If true, again this is a good thing, in that the global price of steel looks forecast to continue to climb. Just today the global economic outlook has been upgraded, with Asia looking at 4.4% + growth. Asia is the world construction hot spot, and thus is pushing the price of steel up.]

3: {opinion} University involvement. Regardless of the perception, the reality is that the University will be economically and institutionally involved in this project. I would argue that only those opposed to this development would see the involvement of the singularly largest economic institution in the southern half of the island as a bad thing. I would rather have them buying land and being involved in this in any way shape or form, than not.

4: {opinion} Students to Dunedin: Quite possibly, do you know for a fact? The university and the government do have funding models and it is well known that the university is looking at the path of an ‘Oxford’ or ‘Harvard’ of the south, with restrictions on courses to get the cream of the crop. The STS (Stop the Stadium) view on this is opinion, not fact. There is nothing in the statutes to stop the role of Otago rising, however, looking to become more elite by having world class facilities at its disposal is never going to be a negative thing. Every major North American university and college have sporting programmes and stadiums (almost better than anything in Australasia), why shouldn’t Otago? The issue isn’t that Otago can’t afford more students. Why is it then that Otago just launched a brand new advertising campaign to attract more students south (good adverts by the way). Whichever way University of Otago goes with its funding model (more students or elitism) is up to Otago and the Government of the day, but does not preclude involvement in this development, opinion does.

5: {opinion} Stadium Functionality: This cannot be known until the stadium is built. Even in the peer review documents, which were cautionary (as they should be) they did not state that the stadium should not go ahead or include multifaceted uses – it signalled caution. As stated throughout the threads in this post, to assume, on the whim of journalists with a paper to push and a couple of promoters from the north, that there won’t be concerts and events at this building is defeatist in the least. This is opinion at best, negative at worst. If we are to assume that the stadium is for a dozen games of rugby a year, this development should stop here and now! I on the other hand assume that the people running the business will look to make money out of this and the way to do that is include as many varied uses as possible. I will always feel that this stadium will only fail if management is remiss in doing the singular role for which it was appointed, make money. But also three years out from completion I think it is unreasonable of the STS to demand to know who will be using the stadium from day one, exceedingly so.

6: {opinion} Budget: Why not, and if they do run over budget, really (it’s actually budgeted for)? The international ability of HOK Sports has been proven globally, if they can’t get a project in on budget, there are very few who can. Indeed, there is evidence of developments (sporting or otherwise) on this scale coming in on budget, within the allowable overflow, or even below budget. “Some experts are saying costs could double” is an expression of opinion not fact. This could simply be taken as other experts suggest that costs could be within budget. Opinion not fact.

7: {opinion} “Membership fee: Experts in the field say that contracts like this are all but impossible to pin down.” Your experts say this. There is plenty of evidence which show civil engineering developments (as this is) have penalties built into them. It’s a standard commercial imperative in most parts of the world. There are penalties if costs over run, if time frames are not met and so on. These are simply commercial realities. This is also a matter for the developers, contractors and lawyers to agree on. If they don’t build in penalties that is their choice, but I would be very doubtful (again opinion) if this isn’t done. We are not talking about cowboy development with crooks, there are some fine international reputations at stake here – and don’t think there aren’t. $188m is not a small amount of money, and no-one is going to be lackadaisical with it. Again this is the opinion of some, not a fact, and there is nothing in physics or economics that means penalties can’t be included in final costs, these haven’t been contractually agreed upon yet.

8: {opinion} The Moana pool comparison is a fair one to make. Because by the opinion of the STS, this will not be a multi-use facility which is open to public use day in day out. Others disagree entirely. This is opinion and not fact by the STS. I say it’s a valid comparison to make, others don’t, this does not mean this is a non-refutable fact. However, to assume that it will be open every day of the year to the public is also being disingenuous. Of course it won’t be. I wasn’t around when Moana was built, but was the Crèche / day care centre part of the original development. I watched last year the development of the new offices and gymnasium in the building, these surely weren’t planned from day one. Buildings, structures and uses evolve (look at the British Museum), why can’t the new stadium.

9: {opinion} Economic prosperity or the death nail in Dunners: Again opinion not fact. Fill a room with 100 economists, 20 will say this, 20 will say that and the other 60 will be somewhere in between. I go with the view that if this development is a success, then the rates relief and economic prosperity of the city can only be a positive thing – but again that is an opinion (possibly supported by some economists somewhere).

10: {opinion} He said – she said, with respect to the numbers. Or I’ll show you my poll and you can show me your poll. Again this is opinion. How is it that after the ORC announced that the people opposed to the stadium at public hearings outnumbered those for the development, that very afternoon the ORC was flooded (literally) with hundreds of emails in support of the stadium. Even if we take up the academics’ offer of a poll of the people, this again is an opinion, of some but not all of the people. And quite frankly I don’t trust the people of Dunedin to put anything other than a tartan tea cosy on a park bench to call it a party (whoops, sorry strong opinion – did I bite?). Council is elected to take the city forward and ensure the economic prosperity of the place, while providing for social and cultural diversity and development. I don’t believe for one minute that this development will preclude the council from undertaking other projects, or for that matter for others to come in and develop in this city. I have no doubt that people are against this project in big numbers, as I have no doubt that there are equally large numbers of supporters, those who shout the loudest are not necessarily in the right. I don’t think (unless in the exceedingly unlikely event that it was +90% against) that council should necessarily take heed of such a poll. Council is elected to take bold and brave decisions and in my opinion this is one they must take.

As stated, I am exceedingly happy that the STS people have come here to debate the issues. I started the blog as a place to discuss design and architecture (and support the stadium). I don’t like the design, but then I support Canterbury and don’t like Red and Black, I can live with it. I have opinions of where this development will take Dunedin, others have their opinions. Of the ten points above, however, only one (the cost of steel) is factual, the rest of the fears and concerns of the STS are opinions (valid or not), not factual redress of the development.

Good luck with the meeting tonight, sorry I can’t make it. I hope that all are civil (IMHO I doubt it very much – there are always idiots on both sides), and that concerns are worked through. Of course I hope that you people fail in your ultimate goal, I pray that this development goes ahead. However, through the scrutiny and concerns of the likes of the STS there is the possibility that a more rigorous development will be undertaken. The STS point to the $11m and time taken already by the DCC and ORC as a bad thing. I tend to think (opinion) that this isn’t a light task and I would rather see them spend $30m and say no with valid reasons than spend no money at all planning and say yes to this project. {As stated I will post about the Vancouver Whitecaps Stadium development, which so far has been many many years in the planning. This is a very good comparison to study and one which we can learn much from.}

As the developers are among some of the finest in the world, responsible for some of the best stadiums (and other civil and commercial developments) anywhere, I just can’t see how this development can be viewed by many as a ‘mickey mouse folly’. HOK sports will not put their name to a development that is doomed to fail (opinion yes, but also commercial imperative).

Posted by Paul Le Comte


Filed under Architecture, Business, Construction, CST, DCC, Democracy, Design, Economics, Events, Geography, Hot air, Innovation, Inspiration, Media, Name, New Zealand, NZRU, ORC, People, Politics, Project management, Property, Site, Sport, Stadiums, STS, Town planning, University of Otago, Urban design