Major upgrades good news for netball players

Purple and blue is set to replace grey at New Plymouth's netball courts.
SIMON O'CONNOR/Fairfax NZ

Purple and blue is set to replace grey at New Plymouth's netball courts.

The $3.8 million dollar upgrade of New Plymouth's netball courts is powering ahead.

Workmen have resurfaced four of the 13 courts at Waiwhakaiho and hope to have the rest finished in time for the new netball season in May.

The work, being carried out by NPE Tech and Kiwi Courts, will also see 18 new outdoor floodlight poles installed.

Work is underway at Waiwhakaiho netball courts in New Plymouth
SIMON O'CONNOR/Fairfax NZ

Work is underway at Waiwhakaiho netball courts in New Plymouth

"Everything's gone really well so far with no hitches, apart from the weather," site manager Jason Gibbs said.

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At present no improvements will be made to the tower and pavilion, however the long term plan is to refurbish the facilities and also move Netball Taranaki's offices form their base at Yarrow Stadium to the courts at Waiwhakaiho.

"We are delighted to see the weather improve so that work can continue at pace, and we can't wait to see the first stage completed at the end of the month," Netball Taranaki's Pia Bailey-Nowell said.

For decades the courts have been criticised as unsuitable for the sheer volume of players that need to use them, with little or no cover, poor playing surfaces and a serious lack of parking in around the area.

"These are exciting times for netball. The upgrades of the facility will enable us to accommodate more teams over a longer period on any given day," Bailey-Nowell said.

"That should also reduce the pressure on the facility in terms of use and parking."

One major benefit of the upgrade is the facility can now be used during the day and at night for training, competitions, tournaments and development days.

It will also allow it to host more tournaments and the first to benefit will be the annual Waste Management North Island Under-15  championships in July.

 - Stuff

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