http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-01-05/f ... ys/6000098
"Flinders Street Station redesign unlikely to go ahead: Victorian Government"
The Victorian Government has said it is unlikely to go ahead with an idea to redevelop Flinders Street Station, despite at least $1 million already having been spent on the project.
The former Coalition government commissioned a design competition to reimagine the station and put together a business case in 2011.
A team of local and Swiss-based architects from HASSELL, Herzog & De Meuron was chosen as the winner from more than 100 entries in August last year.
The firm was behind the design of London's Tate Modern gallery and the National Stadium in Beijing for the 2008 Olympic Games.
The final business case had not been delivered, but the Government said the project would cost about $2 billion, and only 20 per cent of that could be funded by commercial interests.
Treasurer Tim Pallas said a decision had yet to be made on the redevelopment but it appeared to be a lot of money for little gain.
"The previous government put millions of dollars into a design competition, we were quite critical of it when we were in Opposition and we said that design competition didn't accord with the community's priorities," he said.
"It would be an inordinate burden upon taxpayers."
Competition 'nothing more than a drawing project': Pallas
At the time of the competition, then-premier Denis Napthine said the Government would look into whether the project was viable, but there was no guarantee it would be built.
In the lead-up to November's state election Victoria's National Trust urged both parties to allocate $50 million to repair Flinders Street station because the iconic city landmark was "neglected".
Mr Pallas told the ABC the competition was "nothing more than a drawing project".
"Rather than spend billions of dollars on an edifice in the centre of the city, our view was that that money could be better spent delivering better public transport for Victorians," he said.
"We don't see it as our priority and never did.
"That money could be much better spent effectively delivering on the things that Victorians voted for.
"Improved public transport, improved arterial road connections in our suburbs and regional areas and our Westgate distributor being up and running and operational within the first term of government."