Sydney stadium crisis:Labor proposes a smaller Moore Park venue

“She needs to start considering whether it is better to have a 30,000-seat stadium rather than a 45,000-seat stadium,” Ms Voltz said.

The size of a potential new stadium at Moore Park has been a consistent issue of contention in the long-running saga of the state government’s stadium policy.

When former premier Mike Baird announced in September 2015 an intention to build a new rectangular stadium at Moore Park, he said it would have between 50,000 and 55,000 seats.

Mr Baird subsequently reneged on the idea of a new Moore Park stadium – preferring to focus investment on improving ANZ Stadium at Olympic Park.

But under former sports minister Stuart Ayres, the policy changed again under Ms Berejiklian as Premier – and the government committed to a 40,000- to 45,000-seat stadium at Moore Park for $729 million.

Other ideas were floated during the development of this policy. For instance, the NRL and Football Federation Australia at one stage suggested the state government build a more modest 35,000-seat stadium at Moore Park.

“We believe the best outcome for sport and taxpayers would be for the current Allianz Stadium to be knocked down and a new 35,000-seat, purpose-built rectangular stadium built in its place, similar to the new $360 million Western Sydney Stadium at Parramatta,” NRL chief executive Todd Greenberg wrote to Ms Berejiklian in September 2017.

However, the Sydney Cricket and Sports Ground Trust, as well as the Australian Rugby Union, were fierce opponents of a smaller stadium at Moore Park.

The state government has built a 30,000-seat stadium at Parramatta, Bankwest Stadium, for less than its budgeted $360 million.

Asked whether the government would consider building a smaller stadium at Moore Park, Mr Sidoti said through a spokesman: “The NSW government is tendering proposals from construction firms to build the Sydney Football Stadium, on time and on budget for $729 million.”

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