Letter: Stadium costs a sorry saga

Last updated 12:49 04/07/2014

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OPINION: The June 30 story about the stadium again raises the following points.

Substantial and unexplained variations on contract would suggest that something mighty peculiar is going on. Surely it is time to do the maths and come up with some true figures. For the benefit of ratepayers, listed below is some information which will serve to refresh memories of the sorry saga.

The following details have been reported in The Southland Times:

December 2012 - The stadium costs have grown from an original estimate of $28.5 million in 2011 to $34.5m five months ago to a possible $40m now. Smith indicated yesterday that the trust had between $35m and $36m nailed down to build the stadium.

April 25, 2013 - The stadium was expected to cost about $39m to $43m if stage five was built.

June 22, 2013 - Final figure expected to be between $41m and $42m.

July 20, 2013 - Stadium Southland bosses have decided to scale down the fifth and final stage of the new multimillion-dollar stadium in order to save $3m - the saving of $3m meant the final stadium cost would be about $43m.

Another increase of $1m in the space of a month - this fiasco has become an ongoing horror story for the ratepayers of Invercargill and to make matters worse it isn't over yet. We are now faced with the tin rattling and plausible reasons for the over-run from start to stop. One can not fail to think that the Christchurch earthquake has been held responsible (justifiably or not) as an excuse for a lot.

M WARD
Invercargill

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- The Southland Times

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