Ice rink makes $100,000 loss
Porirua’s school holiday ice rink attracted fewer than 12,000 people and will cost ratepayers about $100,000.
The Ice World rink was brought to the city centre for four weeks during September and October, with tickets costing between $15 for children and $50 for a family pass.
Details released under the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act showed the project cost Porirua City Council more than $271,000, with the final price tag about $100,000 after ticket sales.
The council would have needed about 20,000 visitors to break even, and about 12,000 made it through the gates.
Porirua Mayor Nick Leggett said the council always knew it would be running at a ‘‘significant’’ loss to cover costs.
‘‘ But we spend almost $70,000 on the Waitangi Day Festival of the Elements and that’s just one day – this is a whole month,’’ he said.
‘‘ Porirua kids deserve the chance to go ice skating.
‘‘The whole proposal was to activate the city centre, and part of that is not just long- term things, but short- term ways to show what is here as well.’’
Further discussions were needed to determine whether the rink would be brought back, but feedback from the public had been positive, Mr Leggett said.
He rejected criticism that the rink was too expensive for some Porirua families, saying the council ensured there were concession nights and special deals available.
‘‘ Going to the pool or the movies will cost as well. We have the youngest community of anywhere in New Zealand and we need to provide for that.’’
Porirua Chamber of Commerce chief executive Holly Thompson said the city centre ‘‘came alive’’ while the rink was in place, with businesses benefiting from the extra customers.
The chamber contributed $25,000 towards bringing the ice rink to the city.
‘‘We are always looking for ways businesses can leverage off events taking place in town,’’ she said.
‘‘We need to make sure our businesses can make it worth getting in behind these.’’