ACT Chief Minister Andrew Barr says "sensible commercial negotiations" with the federal government can fast-track plans and funding for a new stadium in Canberra.
Barr made stop No. 25 on his worldwide tour of stadiums when he watched the ACT Brumbies beat the NSW Waratahs at a new $350 million venue in Parramatta last weekend.
It was an eye-opening experience given parts of Canberra Stadium are 50 years old and the fan game-day experience has diminished at one of Australian sport's most out of date venues.
The Brumbies and Canberra Raiders are behind a renewed push for Barr to finalise plans to build a new stadium in Civic.
The big issue, however, is finding the funding for a project which would likely cost close to $400 million and involve moving the Civic pool, work on Parkes Way and redeveloping land at Bruce.
One of the ways to help fund it, Barr says, is to have the federal government forgive the $1 billion loan for the Mr Fluffy loose-fill asbestos clean up.
ACT Liberal senator Zed Seselja said he was willing to work with the ACT government on major infrastructure projects, including a stadium.
"We won't pay off the Mr Fluffy loan until 2024," Barr said on Tuesday.
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"The only way I can bring forward stadium infrastructure is if the Commonwealth [was] to forgive that Mr Fluffy loan.
"If there's a practical thing the Commonwealth could do to assist us in bringing that new stadium forward, it would be to forgive that loan.
"I have heard Senator Seselja say he wants to sit down and talk about this. There's one practical example of what the Commonwealth could do."
The ACT government has a least at Canberra Stadium until the end of 2024. It pays $350,000 per year to lease Canberra Stadium from Sport Australia, a federal government agency.
The Mr Fluffy clean up five years ago put Barr's stadium vision on the backburner. The government recouped $700 million from land sales, but still owes $300 million to the federal government.
The other moving parts of the stadium plan are the future of the AIS and potential sale of land at Bruce, as well as having to find a new site for a pool.
Barr has visited stadiums around the world for the past decade to research the best options for building a new venue in the capital or redeveloping Canberra Stadium.
Barr said the government was still considering whether to build a new stadium in Civic, refurbish Canberra Stadium or build a new venue at Bruce.
"No one has spent more time analysing these things in ACT politics than I have over the last decade," Barr said.
"This is a project I would love to be able to build the for the city. But we have to be able to afford and we have to build the right project."
The last major upgrade at Canberra Stadium was for the 2000 Olympic Games. The potential sale of up to 30 hectares of land at the AIS could pave the way for the ACT and federal governments to share revenue by rezoning the space.
Barr will meet with one of the Parramatta stadium architects in the coming weeks to search for ways to cut costs of building a similar venue in Canberra.