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SBD Global/July 18, 2014/Facilities

New Stadium In Perth To Cost $806M, Half Of Funding To Come From Taxpayers

Perth's new sports stadium will cost more than A$862M ($806M) to build, and "more than half of it will be funded by the taxpayer," according to Emily Moulton of PERTH NOW. The final cost for the five-tiered facility was revealed as Western Australia Premier Colin Barnett and Sports Minister Terry Waldron "unveiled the official design." Barnett said that "all issues" relating to the stadium "had been resolved and that the contract with Brookfield's WestStadium would be signed within days" (PERTH NOW, 7/17). WA TODAY reported details of the design have been revealed, "and cup holders and better toilets are just part of the plan." The stadium's features will "include LED lights to show home team colours by night and more than 70 food and beverage options." About 85% of the 60,000 seats in the stadium will be "undercover and all seats will have cup holders." It will have a "halo" style roof and the toilet facilities are "expected to be an improvement on those currently at Patersons Stadium." Opposition spokesman Ken Travers said that Barnett was "dazzling taxpayers with pretty pictures to distract them from the real cost of the stadium." Barnett said that the government "would finance the project like a mortgage to relieve the burden on the state's current community." Of the total cost, 60% "will be paid for up front with the remaining amount, including maintenance costs, financed over 25 years." Travers said that "the Premier hadn't fully disclosed the real cost of the stadium." Travers: "What we need to know is what the interest rate on that 40 percent that we're borrowing through this private arrangement is, because that will tell us the real price" (WA TODAY, 7/17).

DESIGN LAUDED: ARCHITECTURE AND DESIGN's Nathan Johnson reported the project will be developed by Westadium, a "consortium led by Brookfield Financial and John Laing." Westadium spokesperson John Flecker emphasized the design's "seating bowl, lightweight fabric roof and tech-heavy facilities as key features." Flecker: "The new Perth Stadium seating bowl will deliver unrivalled sightlines" (ARCHITECTURE AND DESIGN, 7/17). ABC reported Barnett said "the cost of the stadium and the surrounding sports precinct" would be about A$860M, but "that figure does not include" a A$16M ($15M) project management fee. Barnett said that the stadium "will be lit up in the colours of the teams playing on the day" (ABC, 7/17).
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