Demolition gets the nod
Bulldozers on job after SCG Test
ALLIANZ Stadium will soon be history with the NSW government getting approval for its demolition just three months out from the state election.
Bulldozers will begin tearing the Moore Park venue down as soon as the Test match between Australia and India at the neighbouring SCG wraps up in early January.
But NSW Opposition Leader Michael Daley said the government was showing “undue haste” and should wait until after the March state election.
The Department of Planning and Environment yesterday approved stage one of the stadium redevelopment, which includes the demolition of the venue and a concept approval for the new one.
NSW Minister for Sport Stuart Ayres said Lendlease had been awarded the $730 million contract to demolish and build the new stadium, which is expected to be completed in early 2022.
“We will start construction on the stadium immediately. The site is being prepared for demolition which will take place in early January,” Mr Ayres said yesterday.
The project is expected to create more than 600 construction jobs and support around 300 jobs once operational.
Despite planning approval only being given for the demolition of the site, Mr Ayres said the contract with Lendlease was for both the knock down and rebuild of the ground.
“We have consent for demolition. After demolition, stage two planning consent is the actual construction of the stadium, but the contract is one contract.”
Mr Ayres said the granting of stage two of the planning approval, which details the final built form and operation of the new stadium, should happen in early 2019.
“We are very confident the $730 million will fit into all of the planning conditions that will be put on to this stadium, ” Mr Ayres said.
NSW Opposition Leader Michael Daley said it was the wrong decision.
“Don’t knock this thing down now, wait until the election,” he said. “There are around 90 days to go until caretaker mode. There is no good reason why this government needs to proceed with such undue haste.”
Mr Daley said if elected, his government would not fund the rebuild. Instead Labor would consider a low interest loan to the SCG Trust to pay for the development.
“I will not leave it as a hole in the ground if it is demolished, but the taxpayers of NSW will not foot the bill,” Mr Daley said.