Stadium to get $1m upgrade

HELEN HARVEY
Last updated 05:00 13/02/2014

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Another upgrade at Yarrow Stadium, costing close to $1 million, includes plans for a new scoreboard.

The maintenance work includes strengthening stand roofs, improving lift facilities in the TSB Stand and an upgrade of high speed broadband and speakers.

The total cost will be "a bit more" than the $876,000 annual funding, because the project will be spread over 18 months, New Plymouth District Council property asset manager Peter Handcock said.

Work is due to be completed by the end of June 2015.

In 2002 Rugby Park was redeveloped to become Yarrow Stadium at a cost of more than $17m and more upgrades were made in 2010 before the Rugby World Cup when the terraces were overhauled and seating placed at the southern end of the ground.

The TRC took over ownership of the stadium last year, but the NPDC still looks after the operations.

Mr Handcock said the current work was routine maintenance because things were starting to wear out.

The scoreboard broke down during a rugby game between Taranaki and Tasman last October, leaving many at the ground with no idea of the score or how much time was left.

The call has gone out for public expressions of interest in providing a new scoreboard and there had been a very good response, Mr Handcock said. "We are working through the options. It's early stages but there are some exciting options out there."

It was likely that the new scoreboard would have a replay function.

Mr Handcock said events at the stadium often had issues with the onsite telecommunications, so other work involved upgrading cabling so it could handle modern requirements for technology.

"That's something people don't see. We're also looking for ideas around upgrading the Legends Lounge. It's needing a bit of refurbishment. It is 12 years old."

The work was an interim package of renewals to bridge the gap until the joint governance committee was formed and started on a long term plan.

The committee would look at the bigger picture and plan improvements, he said.

The committee meets for the first time on Tuesday.

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