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Melbourne Lord Mayor Robert Doyle says Adelaide should be shut down

Article from: The Advertiser


March 15, 2009 04:45pm

MELBOURNE'S Lord Mayor Robert Doyle has angered Premier Mike Rann by suggesting Adelaide has "so little going for it that it should be shut down".

Mr Doyle made the comments in a Melbourne newspaper interview marking his first 100 days as Lord Mayor.

Adding to his critiques of other capital cities - he described Greater Brisbane as "almost a contradiction in terms" and Sydney as a city with a wallet instead of a heart" – Mr Doyle said you could not even compare Adelaide to Melbourne, so devoid was it of redeeming qualities.

"We should immediately commence the orderly shutdown of Adelaide,""he said.

Tell Mr Doyle want you think. Fill out the comment box below.

But Mr Doyle's comments have provoked an angry reaction from state leaders, including Premier Mike Rann.

"They (Victorians) are so defensive," Mr Rann said.

"It's so interesting.

"They want to stop water flowing across the border, they want to treat the River Murray as if it's a river in four parts rather than one."

Mr Rann described Mr Doyle as "a failed Liberal Opposition Leader and he's got the second prize of Lord Mayor of Melbourne".

"No one's going to take much notice of him because no one takes much notice of him in Melbourne either," Mr Rann said.

Mr Doyle, a former Victorian state opposition leader, who has been praised for re-engaging Town Hall in debate about the city, is asking people to be patient and realise he has little power as Lord Mayor. "I see myself more as a catalyst, as a lever, as an influencer," he said.

Mr Rann said Victorians hated the fact that the Tour Down Under had been such a success.

"They don't like the fact about Clipsal, they don't like the fact that our festival and film festival are the best in the nation – that the Fringe is the best in the country," Mr Rann said.

"Basically it's a new Lord Mayor who is trying to make a name for himself. He has been sledging every other city around Australia.

"Why doesn't he concentrate on doing his job rather than basically what appears to be city envy."

Opposition Leader Martin Hamilton-Smith said it sounded like Mr Doyle and Victorian Premier John Brumby (who last year called Adelaide a "backwater") had been having a few sherries at the Melbourne Club.

"I think we should cut the rope to Mr Doyle's dinghy and let him sail off to Antarctica," he said.

"They both sound out of touch."

Adelaide Lord Mayor Michael Harbison said Mr Doyle's comments, if quoted accurately, were "a bit silly" but there was a "grain of truth".

"I believe Melbourne does, in fact, pose a real threat to us, losing our young people," he said.

"(Our capital) could be effectively ceded to Melbourne if we don't get on with improving our city and building a critical mass of residents and workers in the CBD."


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Latest Comments:

I love that Mike Rann thinks Melbournians are jealous of the Tour Down Under and the Adelaide Fringe Festival. Considering Melbourne has the Motorcycle and the Formula 1 Grand Prix, the Melbourne Cup, the Australian Open, the Australian Masters, the Boxing Day Test, the International Comedy Festival, the Melbourne Stencil Festival and an all-year round calendar of food & wine events I can see what he means. Melburnians would be jealous wouldn't they? Oh yeah, and funnily enough, Melbourne's also the birthplace of that little game they call the AFL. No contest Adelaide.

Posted by: Stevie of Melbourne 2:25pm July 16, 2009

Mr Doyle is really a dud he hasn't got one thing right yet or come up with any worthwhile ideas to date. Lets face it he is a reject ex Liberal leader and thank God he's not leading the State of Victoria or we would all be in trouble. Melbourne deserves a better Mayor than this person

Posted by: Richard Taylor of Melbourne 2:42pm March 21, 2009

My family toured all the States upon our arrival over 30 years ago. "Too big!", "Too hard to get around", etc etc, as we dismissed one after the other. Melbourne simply had us all looking at each other until one raised the question "Do we want to live here?", and the resounding reply was "NO!!!!!!". We left, came to Adelaide and have never regretted the decision, despite extensive travel throughout Australia in the following years. Adelaide is a beautiful city, filled with fine people. I heartily agree when Mr Doyle says " could not even compare Adelaide to Melbourne ........", because to that I can only say "Thank God!"

Posted by: Lynne of Adelaide 11:08pm March 18, 2009

"Tell Mr Doyle want you think." Want you think? Really well written from another towering Adelaide intellect. The greatest thing that ever came out of Adelaide was Don Dunstan. Since then the place has become a universal, small minded, insular backwater that can only ever talk about itself and nothing else. Grow up Adelaide.

Posted by: Lawrence Mooney of Melbourne 11:04pm March 17, 2009
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