Nicholas Jones is a New Zealand Herald political reporter.

No Government cash for new Auckland stadium

Blues halfback Augustine Pulu fights for loose scrum ball during a game at Eden Park. Photo / Greg Bowker
Blues halfback Augustine Pulu fights for loose scrum ball during a game at Eden Park. Photo / Greg Bowker

An Auckland central city stadium wouldn't get Government funding, Prime Minister Bill English says.

A stadium is back on the cards after Auckland Mayor Phil Goff commissioned work on the feasibility of a new central city site costing up to $1 billion.

This morning English said the Government's position remained the same - it would not put up any money towards a stadium.

"Our top priority right now is this billion-dollar housing infrastructure fund, which we're in intense negotiations with the council about right now. That's going to take all our attention and cash for a while," English told The Am Show.

"It hasn't been raised with us. It's not a high priority. We're not aiming to put money into it."

PwC has been commissioned through the council's regional facilities arm to investigate potential sites, including Goff's preference for a stadium on railway land alongside Vector Arena close to the city's main public transport and hospitality facilities.

It follows more than a decade of controversy over whether the city should abandon its showcase venue, Eden Park, since the Government offered to build a waterfront stadium in 2006 for the 2011 Rugby World Cup.

Goff has previously said Auckland could not afford a white elephant, saying the 50,000-seat Eden Park was limited to 21 night events and could need another $250 million spent on it over the next 15 years.

The council needed to find alternative ways to fund a new stadium, he said, which could cost up to $1 billion. They included contributions from major sporting codes, income from concerts, private sponsorship and selling assets, like Eden Park.

PwC are due to report back in the middle of the year.

- NZ Herald

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