Addington stand demolition in days

SAM SACHDEVA
Last updated 14:05 03/08/2011
Addington public stand
Iain McGregor

Addington Raceway's public grandstand will be demolished by mid-October.

Shane Gloury
Iain McGregor
Addington Raceway CEO Shane Gloury walks past the seats recently removed from the stand.

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Demolition of one of Christchurch's sporting landmarks will begin within days.

LATEST: Southern Demolition is due to start work on the nearly 50-year-old public grandstand at Addington Raceway within the week.

Demolition work is due to be complete by mid-October, before November's Cup Week.

Addington Raceway chief executive Shane Gloury said the stand had been badly damaged in the February earthquake and subsequent aftershocks.

"There is simply far too much structural damage to justify the millions of dollars that would be required to be spent in attempting to repair the building," Gloury said.

The venue's two other stands, the Metropolitan and Twiggers, did not suffer structural damage and were open.

It is likely a replacement will be built, but with fewer than the stand's 4000 seats.

"It is fair to say that in the earlier days when it was built the stand received a lot more use than in recent years, except for Cup and Show days," Gloury said.

The public stand was erected in 1962 after a fire during a race on Show Day in 1961 damaged its predecessor.

Organisers were working on a range of temporary structures for this year's Cup Day, including marquees and a "village-type area" with a big screen and a band stage.

Gloury said the stand's demolition would not have a significant effect on the raceway's capacity. While visitor numbers from the North Island and Australia were likely to fall, the paucity of major city events meant residents should turn out in greater numbers, he said.

"Cantabrians will be itching to get out, let their hair down and enjoy themselves."

Gloury was "fairly optimistic" attendance would not fall, with about 20,000 enjoying Cup Day in recent years.

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