Carpenters for stadium to be mostly local

Otago tradespeople should be doing the lion's share of carpentry work at the Forsyth Barr Stadium in Dunedin, despite the largest contract going to an Auckland company.

Carisbrook Stadium Trust chairman Malcolm Farry yesterday said while the contracts were yet to be finally signed off, it was expected there would be four subcontractors doing the work, three local, and one from Auckland.

He told a Dunedin City Council finance and strategy committee meeting, during discussion of the latest report on the project, the Auckland contractor was expected to use about 75 people for the work, and about 50 of those would be from the South.

After the meeting, he said the three local contractors, subject to final confirmation, would take about half the work, and the Auckland contractor the other half.

The issue of the carpentry contract hit the news in April, when a report to the council said the tenders had come back significantly above budget, which meant the trust had to go back to the market to try to negotiate a more acceptable price.

Earlier this month, it emerged one contract had been let to Auckland company Wallace Construction without the knowledge of the trust, bypassing an agreed process between the trust and main contractor Hawkins Construction.

The report said the result of re-tendering the contract was that "we are now just over budget, rather than the major overrun the original process produced".

Mr Farry said a formal announcement on the contracts was expected shortly.

Another issue raised during discussion of the report was the number of toilets at the new stadium, after Cr Bill Acklin noted 30-minute waits, during Saturday's Carisbrook test, for both toilets and bars.

Dunedin Venues Management Ltd (DVML) chief executive David Davies said there would be more toilets per head at the new stadium than at Carisbrook.

He was considering putting toilets, either permanent or temporary, at the west stand, where none were planned.

Patrons would be expected to use north stand facilities, which would not be ideal when the stadium was full, he said, and that had to be dealt with.

DVML commercial manager Guy Hedderwick said private-sector funding, from selling seating and membership, stood at $32.6 million.

Mr Davies said there was "a lot more interest bubbling now" in buying seating and membership products, and the benefit of events like the open day at the site on Saturday could not be underestimated.


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