An artist's impression of the stadium.
Early results of a survey gauging support for public
funding of the Otago Stadium indicate a major shift in public
sentiment away from the project.
Of almost 1400 returns so far, preliminary analysis indicates
73.3% of respondents do not support public funding.
That is a major increase in opposition since a Dunedin City
Council telephone survey of 2200 residents early last year
showed 62.2% thought it should be built and 51.9% thought the
council should help fund it.
That survey, and larger city and regional council mail-out
surveys at the time that indicated closer to 40% were
prepared to pay for the project, were heavily criticised by
stadium opponents, who claimed they gave a skewed result.
The latest survey was sent to 5000 randomly-selected Dunedin
homes earlier this month, after Otago University School of
Business lecturer Dr John Williams and marketing department
lecturer Dr Ben Wooliscroft heeded a call from Stop the
Stadium president Bev Butler for a survey.
The pair put together a question they said would be based on
"neutral" research, despite the parties involved being unable
to agree on facts and figures to be included. The $7000 cost
of the survey was raised by donations after both councils
refused to fund it.
Asked by the Otago Daily Times for an update
yesterday, Dr Williams said raw data showed 70% opposed the
stadium. After the data was adjusted to deal with demographic
irregularities, adjustments based on information in the last
census, that figure increased to 73.3%.
Dr Williams emphasised the results were preliminary, but he
would be "very, very surprised" if they changed by more than
1% or 2%.
The results of this survey and the councils' mail-out surveys
were comparable and he had no problems with their