QEII 'farewell event needed'

LOIS CAIRNS
Last updated 11:11 20/09/2012
QEII
JOHN KIRK-ANDERSON/FAIRFAX NZ

About to go: Most of QEII will be demolished because the complex is considered dangerous.

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A former city councillor has made an emotional plea for the council to fund a community event at Queen Elizabeth II Park so people can grieve and farewell the soon-to-be demolished complex.

Carole Evans was unable to hold back tears as she begged the council today to use some of the money from its capital endowment fund to finance a community event that would bring people together to say their goodbyes to QEII Park.

She said the complex had been an intrinsic part of the city for many years and it was important that people were given the chance to remember the good times and to express their sorrow at the facility's demise.

"We need a family event to give those who loved using the facility the opportunity to grieve ... and give thanks,'' she said.

Evans said that although the capital endowment fund was earmarked for economic development projects, under the circumstances it was appropriate that some of the money was used to fund community events.

"Our people are still hurting. They are still finding it difficult to face the future as the city they knew is gradually demolished,'' she said.

Community events such as the one proposed for QEII Park would help lift their spirits and help them retain their faith in the city.

"The fund should be used to help repair people and help repair our city,'' Evans said.

Councillors are deciding whether they should dip into the capital endowment fund, which stands at $100 million, to free up money for community projects.

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- The Press

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