The State Liberals have given in-principle support to the long overdue upgrade of the Festival Centre but are urging strong community involvement in the development of the final designs of the plaza and the Centre.
After 13 years of neglect of the Centre, the Festival Centre upgrade has become so urgent that it had to be announced at the same time as it plans to close hospitals and slash emergency departments across Adelaide.
Neglect and cutting services are the hallmarks of Labor’s poor management of South Australia’s finances.
“South Australia has an enviable reputation as a leader in the arts with the recently completed Festival of Arts and Fringe Festival drawing hundreds of thousands of local, interstate and overseas arts lovers to events across Adelaide,” said Shadow Minister for Arts Stephen Wade.
“To ensure South Australia remains a premier hub of creative expression and development we need to upgrade our flagship facility - the Festival Centre.
“The redevelopment must be done hand in glove with the planning for the plaza so that we make the most of the opportunity to activate the public spaces and integrate them with the arts facilities.
“There are strong examples across the world of arts precincts being redeveloped in recent years which have dramatically enhanced both public recreation and the accessibility of the arts.
“Careful planning mean we should be able to do the same here.
“The Weatherill Government’s mismanagement of so many major projects has bled South Australia of the financial flexibility needed to manage the provision of basic services across the state.
“The $600m blow out in the new Royal Adelaide Hospital construction project is more than double the hospital upgrades stopped in the last budget and seven times the investment in the upgrade of the Festival Centre precinct.
“Had the Weatherill Government better managed the introduction of its electronic patient system (EPAS) there would be no need to close the Noarlunga ED to cut costs.
“South Australians are paying dearly for a decade of waste by successive Labor Governments.”