Monday, March 18, 2013

My letter published in the cape times

I agree with the ratepayers analysis of the report by external consultants about the Cape Town stadium lacking any vision or credibility. ( 11th March 2013). Creating a commercial district around the stadium as well as in the stadium is not what the stadium was built for. It was built for sport and other special events. The majority of Capetonians don't feel like they "own" the stadium or what happens to it. If it did get torn down i am not sure if anyone would care or if there would be a huge outcry. It would save taxpayers R45 million and we still have Newlands, both cricket and Rugby and Athlone for soccer. So what would be an innovative model. I write in my personal capacity because the City officials are not interested in meeting with me to discuss this option. I would set up a financial cooperative. Here citizens of Cape Town can purchase shares in the Stadium Financial Cooperative. I believe that R100 million per year can be raised selling shares. The beauty of a financial Cooperative is that no matter how many shares you buy you only have one vote. Once the money is raised the Stadium Coop can purchase the stadium on behalf of the denizens of Cape Town. The city can own a minority share if it chooses. Once the people own the stadium ( and this was not considered in the consultants report) the stadium will always be packed and shareholders will make sure it is in order to get a dividend or return on their investment. However the real benefit will be that the people from Cape Town will take ownership and make it a success.