Trust critical of some property owners

Carisbrook Stadium Trust chairman Malcolm Farry has criticised some of the property owners the trust has been negotiating with for the Awatea St stadium site.

In a press release, Mr Farry said negotiations with ‘‘some parties'' had been conducted in what ‘‘appears to have been something less than good faith and that is certainly frustrating and disappointing''.

He specifically excluded from his criticism Scenic Circle Hotel owners Earl and Lani Hagaman, who own the bulk of the freehold land required for the stadium, saying that ‘‘by contrast'' negotiations undertaken with Mr and Mrs Hagaman had been conducted in ‘‘absolute good faith and concluded very successfully from the perspective of all parties''.

‘‘The Hagamans are great supporters of the city and its people and clearly want the stadium project to be a success.''

Mr and Mrs Hagaman have not returned calls from the Otago Daily Times.

Mr Farry said it was ‘‘disappointing'' other parties ‘‘had not felt able to conduct themselves as professionally''.

The trust has signed contracts with 13 property interests, including Milton-based construction company Calder Stewart, which owns two freehold blocks of land at Awatea St.

Company director Alan Stewart yesterday declined to comment on Mr Farry's statement, citing confidentiality clauses in contracts signed with the trust.

A third vendor of freehold land, Tony Clear, said he had signed a contract ‘‘some time ago'' for Maxton Holdings' 5000sq m section and, while he had discussions with Mr Farry two weeks ago, he was unaware of ‘‘any issues''.

Asked if he took exception to Mr Farry's comments, Mr Clear said: ‘‘No, not in the slightest. I'm thick skinned though, of course. don't think there are any issues that I am aware of. They certainly haven't been raised with me.''

One of the leasehold owners John Penno, a director of Technical Glass Products, said his company had ‘‘certainly acted in good faith''.

‘‘We are not in dispute with the Carisbrook Stadium Trust.''

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