A sunken stadium at the waterfront? Really?

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Public urged to get behind The Crater, a sunken waterfront stadium

The public is being urged to show politicians that they want a national, covered, multi-purpose stadium on Auckland’s waterfront.

The consortium behind The Crater Arena Aotearoa project has taken out advertisements aimed at prompting people to support The Crater on a poll at change.org.

Their design – a see-through enclosed structure that could scale for crowds from 20,000 to 70,000 – is a finalist in the future projects category of the World Architecture Festival Awards.

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But the stadium, which would be sunk into the Waitematā Harbour next to Bledisloe Wharf, needs positive support from politicians to give private funders the confidence to fork out for a detailed feasibility study.

…there seems to be an enormous disconnect between what people want to build and the environment they will be building in.

With catastrophic climate change on the horizon, and rising sea levels, the idea of building  a sunken stadium right on the waterfront sounds like a cleverly designed death trap.

Shouldn’t modern large public buildings be future proof? You couldn’t create a parody funnier than this, a sunken stadium on the waterfront hit by a huge storm surge would surely destroy this?

The thing about NZ, is that we are actually stupid enough to do something like this, then have the company fall over while it’s being built so the council and Government have to step in to complete it and a year after completion, it gets swamped by a storm.

I’d say this was a joke, but a joke requires skill, timing and good structure, none of which seems to apply here.

12 COMMENTS

  1. Well I think you could put an indoor basketball stadium on the water front and have it double as a 20,000 seat venuebut not an open air rugby paddock. Some one has been drinking there own kool aid on this one. Y’know if we were going to have a down town rugby paddock we would have kept the old Carlaw Park stadium from 30 years ago but we couldn’t, because we couldn’t afford it, and still can’t. This is bullshot really. We should just upgrade Erricson and the North Shore Stadium.

    • The problem is that the council don’t have enough to do with their neoliberal approach, they outsource all the work councils used to provide, like rubbish and transport and then have too many staff and too much time on their hands so as well as drinking the kool aid, they have time to go on overseas trips to China etc, renovate new offices, plan their next mayoral campaign, while getting expensive consultancy reports for brainless schemes that opportunists bring them that they lap up and work out new taxes ….

    • The other good news (sarcasm) is that the government is introducing more tax breaks to business for losses even if they never did anything and they don’t go ahead…

      “Investing in assets will be more affordable for businesses under new tax rules being introduced in time for the next financial year, the Government says.

      The Government was changing this so businesses could deduct “feasibility expenditure” from their tax bills, including for projects that didn’t end up going ahead, he said.”

      https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/industries/116004364/government-tweaks-tax-rules-for-businesses-to-encourage-investment

      Great to see many more fantastical and recreational projects being tax deductible in the future!… (sarcasm)

  2. Really a lot more important things to spend money on that this. Auckland council cant even decide that to do with their existing stadiums.

    • And constantly bailing existing stadiums out, by constantly tipping in money, few questions asked, not a loan of course, they don’t have to pay it back to the ratepayers, to their mates, aka in MT Eden.

      I heard developers will build the Atlantis underwater stadium in return for ‘swapping’ prime MT Eden land at Mt Eden stadium, yep, sounds like a scam, but Phil Goff seems to have spend a near 1 million dollar report on it…

      Money for jam to be borrowed on risky ventures at Auckland City Council… or assets given away for a song to developers like the Mt Eden deal, or John Love who was able to buy the council Civic Administration Building, worth at least $60m, plus half a hectare of prime CBD land, for a pitiful $3m… yep in the middle of a housing crisis and a debt crisis at Auckland City, the well paid CEO and Phil Goff seem to have plenty of cash to give away and assets going cheap and not even advertised on the open market and auctioned or any sort of due diligence ….

      Next minute they are thinking up a new tax with central government, aka the petrol tax which was supposed to be for rail across Auckland, now the money is being earmarked for a construction upgrade to a bus station and a holiday highway to the airport for visitors, the rail part for commuters seems to have been put on ice for now and the money spent on VIP travel links and the construction industry.

      Then there are rumours about the pooh tax being proposed so that when the aforementioned visitors come to NZ the kiwis can pay for the infrastructure for their sewerage but meanwhile just pipe it out under the bridge… or 3km from shore cruise ship style, just some inconvenient truth of growing Auckland, neoliberal, deregulated style…

  3. ” The thing about NZ, is that we are actually stupid enough to do something like this, then have the company fall over while it’s being built so the council and Government have to step in to complete it and a year after completion, it gets swamped by a storm ”

    Summed up perfectly Bomber.

    The terrifying thing is that most people will think it is a great idea , i hope part of the emergency planning includes life jackets and inflatable dinghies.

    The rich listers will have their own medivac helicopters on call so at least they wont get wet.

    Sounds like just another rugby venue so with that in mind it will get serious consideration.

  4. The project may be “dead in the water” (excuse the bad pun) before we realise it: I doubt any insurance company will touch the thing with a barge poll.

    No insurance, no bank loans, no project. The end.

  5. “Need / th’need ? ” The Lorax said . Good kiwi commonsence and pragmatism has gone out the window. Build it where it is sensible, accessable, safe and affordable and leave the coastal edges of Auckland to things nautical.

  6. “Need / th’need ? ” The Lorax said . Good kiwi commonsence and pragmatism has gone out the window. Build it where it is sensible, accessable, safe and affordable and leave the coastal edges of Auckland for things nautical.

  7. > Shouldn’t modern large public buildings be future proof? You couldn’t create a parody funnier than this, a sunken stadium on the waterfront hit by a huge storm surge would surely destroy this?

    The only thing funnier would be if someone made the decision to abolish the existing National Museum, housed on relatively high ground in the centre of town, which could easily have been redeveloped and expanded by relocating (or just abolishing) the struggling polytech sharing the site (now a Massey satellite campus), and build a brand new multi-million dollar building for it. Right on the edge of the harbour. On claimed land that used to *be* the harbour. Put all the countries most important artistic and cultural treasures in it. Hilarious!

    There seems to be a rash of this in the last few decades. Both Wellington and Dunedin have built a new stadium on claimed land on the edge of their habours, replacing older ones that were on relatively high ground. Who’s making these seemingly crazy decisions, and why?

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