“Ludicrously irresponsible” Council considers spending $13 million on transport project

Chris Lynch
Chris Lynch
Apr 18, 2024 |

Graphic: Christchurch City Council

The Christchurch City Council is facing criticism wanting to allocate an additional $13 million of taxpayers’ funds to a transportation project associated with the Christchurch stadium.

As first reported by Chris Lynch Media, The New Zealand Transport Agency postponed its funding decision, leaving a considerable portion of the project’s budget, specifically 51% or $13 million, in limbo.

In June last year, the Council approved infrastructure changes around the stadium. The project includes outdoor dining areas, designated loading zones, parking spaces, traffic controls, retractable bollards, and electronic signage. It also features expanded footpaths, reduced speed limits, and aesthetic upgrades

Now, council staff are proposing to use rate-payer funds to cover the shortfall, arguing that the roads must be upgraded before the completion of the stadium.

Taxpayers’ Union Spokesman Alexander Murphy said “this stadium has already burdened Christchurch ratepayers enough, with its ridiculous delays and enormous budget blowouts.

“These extra nice-to-haves are clearly unaffordable, and represent nothing more than just wasteful gold-plating.”

Murphy said “Christchurch ratepayers have only just been slapped with a double–digit rates hike and are being warned of more to come.

“Any responsible Council should be focussed on getting that figure down by any means necessary – including scrapping needless vanity projects like this.

“This upgrade is clearly not a priority for NZTA, who aren’t even convinced they’ll be able to hold up their side of the bargain come July, so why should it be a priority for the Council?

“Potentially opening up ratepayers to further costs going forward by ploughing ahead here would be ludicrously irresponsible.”

Chris Lynch
Chris Lynch

Chris Lynch is a journalist, videographer and content producer, broadcasting from his independent news and production company in Christchurch, New Zealand. If you have a news tip or are interested in video content, email [email protected]

Have you got a news tip? Get in touch here

got a news tip?