Hooray! Finally someone in the corridors of power is taking sport seriously and at least giving us options as to what top drawer sport may look like in Auckland over the long term.

Many of you will have read with interest the front page story in yesterday's Weekend Herald. Regional Facilities Auckland confirmed they have undertaken a feasibility study into a downtown stadium.

Instead of just talk and debate, we now have action and hope that this mish-mash of sporting venues in New Zealand's largest city can finally be sorted.

Can you imagine a sporting precinct in Auckland, a smaller version of what Melbourne has and loves?


A 35,000 seat stadium, right next door to Vector Arena, which would play host to more boutique concerts and events.

Unlike the doomed waterfront stadium proposal of 2007, this concept has buy-in from the private sector. I spoke with several interested parties on Friday and you could hear the excitement in their voices.

This would be ground-breaking and would complete Auckland as a global sporting destination.

So how does the future look? In short, here goes. . .

• The Warriors and Blues become the anchor tenant for a new downtown stadium which also hosts all the big rock concerts that come to Auckland.
• Western Springs is green-lighted as a cricket and AFL venue. The St Kilda club has already committed to bringing annual matches here once the transformation from a speedway track is complete.
• With the Nines heading to Australia, plans are well advanced with the NRL about bringing one, maybe two, double headers to Mt Smart next year. Then league fans are guaranteed to see the best players, an issue the Nines grappled with but ultimately failed to solve.

By all accounts the feasibility study led by PWC is weeks away from completion. Then we will know for sure what is realistic and what is sporting fantasy.

The only truly unknown in all this is what of the Eden Park Trust and our "National Stadium"?

To their credit, they have tried to make the old girl sing. Concerts were asked for and denied. Residents win again.


The NRL is still not ruling out a State of Origin clash in Auckland but that would take some mighty negotiation skills to get the residents to sign off on a 10pm kickoff, even if it was a one-off.

As a sports nut, I hope the numbers stack up. We have moaned for too long about the state of sport and what it offers in this city.

Seize the moment, people, because this is it. Make no mistake, there will be no third chance.