13 Feb 2013

Dunedin council loses millions on Carisbrook sale

7:41 am on 13 February 2013

Dunedin City Council has conditionally sold the former Carisbrook sports ground for millions less than it was bought for.

The council agreed to sell the three-hectare site during a closed-door meeting on Monday.

This latest sale is for the main sports ground, following earlier sales of related houses for $700,000 and half of the old carpark for an undisclosed sum.

Radio New Zealand News understands it is being bought by construction firm Calder Stewart for industrial development.

The council has been trying to sell the site since it was abandoned for a new stadium 18 months ago.

It paid $7 million to take over the ground and some nearby houses from the Otago Rugby Football Union in 2009 and sources say Calder Stewart will buy it for slightly more than half that.

The council will not confirm the price or purchaser, saying the details are commercially sensitive until the sale becomes unconditional, which may take several months.

It is not clear how close the money will come to settling the $3.8 million debt the council still holds on the original Carisbrook deal.

When the main sale is completed the council will still own one small bit of Carisbrook - half the old stadium's carpark - which the new owner was not interested in buying.