Greens send letter of complaint over stadium

Auckland-based Green Party MP Keith Locke is concerned about the government’s lack of consultation over the planned waterfront stadium for Auckland.

Mr Locke has written a letter to Sports Minister Trevor Mallard pointing out the party’s concerns.

“We are disappointed that Labour has rushed off to consult National, ignoring the Greens, a party it has a confidence and supply agreement with,” Mr Locke, the party’s Sports Spokesperson says.

“National’s sports spokesperson Murray McCully was briefed some days ago, yet there has been no approach to myself.

“I have written to Mr Mallard today requesting a briefing and outlining three major concerns we have with the waterfront stadium proposal.

“The first is that it would undermine the Auckland project to make the waterfront people friendly. It would be a huge inward-facing blot on the seascape.

“Secondly, it would be wasting hundreds of millions of dollars that would be better spent on improving Auckland’s public transport system. The extra $700 million (over the $320 million upgrade of Eden Park) is exactly what the Auckland Regional Transport Authority is asking for to electrify the suburban rail network and complete and underground loop beyond Britomart to the western line.

“Thirdly, we doubt the waterfront stadium is buildable by 2011, because of the difficult foundation work required, and the consent process. The Green Party is not inclined to support any “fast-track” legislation to go around the Resource Management Act, when so many environmental concerns are to be addressed.”