I have been disgusted with the amount of broken glass and burnt patches on the roads around the 'student' area of Dunedin when I have needed to travel though it. The shortest route I used to take. Firstly the burnt patches destroy the road surface and need to be patched at expense to ratepayers of whom I am one directly, though renters pay through their rents too.
We have our Mayor going on about drink, and the Police saying without the Christchurch visitors it wouldn't happen ... both obvious and valid arguments. But what of the argument that visitors to the city spend money.
Not knowing much about the law I assume that if there is a congregation of people drinking and organising bonfires on public streets the Police have to do something about it. There is also the safety aspect of fires spreading to houses, though I don't think that is a very serious and likely problem. So lateral thinking suggests to me that the Council should arrange the closure of sections of Castle Street for the weekend. They often close off the central portion of the Octagon. So it is not a public street, the police do not need to don riot gear and approach students, the fire brigade can simply watch from a distance, and the students can drink and burn and other activities to their heart's content.
The other proviso is that the student organisers organise a bond to pay for cleaning up and resurfacing the road. Media could also be required to pay to cover the 'event' becuase I'm sure their presence helps to inflame the situation.
The student organisers should think up a better place than the Edgar centre for a concert becuase I am not suprised the centre management declined to have a drunken mob spoiling their carpet and other likely problems.