NSW Premier says Rosehill sale cannot proceed without ATC member approval

Only days after Australian Turf Club's members questioned their Board's decision to sell Rosehill Racecourse to the NSW State Government for a housing estate the NSW Premier Chris Minns has publicly stated that the development cannot proceed if the ATC members do not agree to the sale of the racecourse.

“That decision [to develop Rosehill] will have to be decided by members of the ATC, not the government,” Minns said on Wednesday reported on Wednesday.

The ATC held one of a proposed series of meetings for Club members to assess the sale at Rosehill last week. Leading Sydney and Australian trainers Gai Waterhouse and Chris Waller spoke against the sale in a move that will certainly attract the attention of other Club members.

The reported that Minns told budget estimates he was “hopeful” that the government could progress negotiations with the ATC, but conceded “irreconcilable differences” could stop the ambitious plans for Rosehill.

When the sale was announced in December a figure of $5 billion was mentioned as the result for the ATC which was to be spent on a new racecourse and upgrading other ATC facilities. With the cost of finding a suitable new site for a racecourse and training facilities in the Sydney basin that figure would not be 'banked' as an ongoing investment fund. 

An example of the cost of a new state-of-the-art racecourse with training facilities and modern grandstands is the Hong Kong Jockey Club's Conghua Racecourse in China with an all up cost of around US$3 billion. Those costs are based on a Chinese construction cost base and not an Australian construction cost base.

With an extra Metro station likely to be required for the Rosehill housing complex there must also be doubts about the NSW State Government's funding for the extension to the Metro line.

Minns has acknowledged that an additional station on the Metro West line from the Sydney CBD to Westmead, “was not a done deal”.

Rosehill Racecourse, picture ThoroughbredNEWS