NZ Herald 26 May 2015
The revamped design of the contentious SkyCity convention centre has divided critics, with one urban design expert saying it looks like “a ship beached up on Nelson St”.
The latest design plans were released today by Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce and SkyCity chief executive Nigel Morrison.
The redesign came about after Mr Morrison said the cost of the centre had grown from $402 million to $530 million, and it might need an injection of public money
That prompted Prime Minister John Key to express concerns over an “eyesore” if extra money wasn’t spent on it.
Family First suggested the decreased size meant the legislative concession for allowing an increased number of pokie machines should be significantly reduced, if not scrapped.
Director Bob McCoskrie said Family First stood by its original comments that the concession would harm those with gambling problems.
“As we said from the outset, this deal will only hurt families, and there is still debate over the need for the Centre at all. A Convention Centre may sound good but not when it is being funded on gambling losses.
“Government deals and legislative concessions should not be used as cheerleaders for casinos and the gambling industry.”