Wednesday 12th of December 2018

pissing elephants in each others pockets?...

white elephant inc

Build it and they will come. The New South Wales government thinks this to be true – so much, in fact, that they are spending a minimum of $2.3 billion of public money in achieving their aim.

The NSW government feel that having three elite stadiums – Homebush, Parramatta and the Sydney Football Stadium – will enhance the economy of the state. However, even blind Freddy can see this is foolish.

Before you howl in protest and scream that rugby league needs purpose-built stadiums, know that I do not disagree with you. Having purpose-built stadiums that can be home to three major sports makes sense. I am, like you, tired of seeing AFL ovals pop up around New South Wales and Queensland with no-one playing on them.

I am just saying the locations, the size of the stadiums and at that cost is wrong.

Think of it like this: the government is knocking down the Stadium Australia at Homebush, which is only 20 years into its lifecycle, and replacing it with one of almost equal capacity. At the same time, they are knocking down the SFS in the eastern suburbs that rarely, if ever, sells out and replacing it with a stadium of equal size.

Further to this, Parramatta Stadium is also under construction and will hold 30,000 people, but this venue is within half an hour of Homebush. All of this will cost at least $2.3 billion.

The NSW government thinking is entirely wrong. The SFS does not need to be a 45,000-seat stadium. When was the last time it sold out? Even if we take into account population growth, a 30,000-seat stadium at most is all that is required here.

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white elephants of the NSW empire...

New South Wales Premier Gladys Berejiklian has confirmed Sydney’s worst kept secret — that the government plans to spend $2 billion on demolishing and rebuilding the 18-year-old Sydney Olympic Stadium at Homebush, and the Sydney Football Stadium at Moore Park in the city’s east.

The premier described the new designs as “colosseum-inspired” and an investment in the tourism industry.

The plan will see Allianz Stadium at Moore Park, designed by Philip Cox and opened in 1988, torn down and rebuilt over three years at an estimated cost of $705 million. Construction of the new 45,000-seat stadium will mean the 2020 NRL grand final will be held at the SCG.

The plan overturns former premier Mike Baird’s April 2016 announcement that the stadium would receive lower cost upgrades instead and is a major victory for the SCG Trust.

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excess and disgrace...

Goodness! There I was minding my own business, taking a little rest after penning a piece on how I just couldn't understand the virtues of the NSW government spending $2 billion of our money to knock down the Olympic Stadium and the SFS, to replace them with new ones – all when there is ZERO public demand to do either – when all hell broke loose. The phone started ringing. Texts started pinging. Twitter started zinging.

And all together they were singing: go harder, this is a DISGRACE!

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palpable political poison...


There is growing opposition to the State Government's decision to spend $2 billion knocking down and rebuilding both Sydney Olympic and Sydney Football stadiums, with NSW Liberal and Nationals MPs privately expressing anger and concern over the plan.

A petition on calling on Premier Gladys Berejiklian to "stop wasting money", started by sports commentator and former Wallaby Peter FitzSimons, has gathered more than 62,000 signatures in less than 48 hours.

"We are tired of taxpayer dollars being lavished on building facilities for sports big business, while community sport withers on the vine for lack of facilities and resources," Mr FitzSimons said.

Sports Minister Stuart Ayres has been on a media blitz this morning defending the decision.

He told ABC Sydney: "I think the key point for us is that over a 20-year period NSW has gone from being the best-placed state to host sport and major events in Australia, to just about the worst-placed state."

Politically, it is dividing the State Government with many backbenchers seething over the plan.

The ABC has spoken to dozens of Lower and Upper House MPs and all bar one raised their concern about the decision, while their anger was palpable.


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Whatsernamejiklian wants to build a mausoleum to herself... Read from top.


stadium madness...

I refer to the looming disaster of #StadiumSplurge – the idea of dropping two or three billion dollars to knock over three relatively modern stadiums and redo them on the back of precisely no public demand to do anything.

All kinds of wild predictions were made about the economic benefits, with just about nothing on who was going to have to pay the piper when the bill came.

And this week we have seen the results. The Eels and the Wanderers are balking at paying three times the freight to rent the new version of Parramatta Stadium.

And why wouldn’t they? Sure, the new stadium may see a momentary spike in attendance for the first few matches. But how many think it will bring in three times the crowd? Exactly.

It is a nonsense, and a transparent one. This is not just your correspondent bleating in the corner. A lot of rusted on fans who have contacted me are deeply pissed off about the whole shambles and threatening to simply stop going.

These problems will be multiplied many times over when it comes to Homebush and the SFS and, if I may say the bleeding obvious, it is ludicrous for the government to push so hard to knock the SFS over with an election so close, when the proper course is to hold off  and let the people decide what they want. You know, like a democracy?


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