Project director hired for New Plymouth’s proposed multi-sport hub development

Taranaki Racing Inc will discuss the Multi-Sport Hub at its AGM on December 13.

Andy Jackson/Stuff

Taranaki Racing Inc will discuss the Multi-Sport Hub at its AGM on December 13.

A project director has been appointed to secure funding for New Plymouth’s proposed multimillion-dollar multi-sport hub.

Steve Bramley, from Auckland firm SGL Funding Ltd, will lead the projectfor at least the next 15 months, his salary coming out of the overall budget.

Last year draft plans were unveiled for a proposed multi-sport hub for the New Plymouth Raceway.

It is a collaboration between the New Plymouth District Council (NPDC), Sport Taranaki and Te Kohitanga o Te Atiawa and hapū Ngāti Te Whiti and Ngāti Tuparikino.

The hub will provide basketball courts, hockey turf and facilities for other sports and activities including rugby, netball, football, volleyball, badminton and cricket. Part of its scope will be to contribute to community wellbeing.

Having completed the feasibility work last year, NPDC is now progressing the concept and plan stage and will be moving to more detailed design in 2022/23, a report to the Strategic Projects Committee said.

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But last year Taranaki Racing Inc (TRI) indicated it would call in the lawyers if the stadium was to be built in the middle of the racecourse.

And so far all concept drawings and plans show the hub with the stadium in the centre.

TRI, which is in the middle of a nine-year wrangle with NPDC over its lease, will present a report on the hub to members at its AGM on December 13.

The hub would ruin view lines from the racecourse’s main area and reflections from the building would be a hazard for jockeys and horses, TRI said last year.

Draft designs for the multi-sport hub planned for the centre of the New Plymouth Racecourse.

Sport Taranaki/Supplied

Draft designs for the multi-sport hub planned for the centre of the New Plymouth Racecourse.

It backs having sports fields in the centre of the track and the indoor stadium adjacent to the nearby TSB Stadium.

Last year, Sport Taranaki boss Michael Carr said if the stadium was built straight away it would cost $91 million.

The first phase of the hub, an indoor stadium 3.5 times bigger than the current TSB Stadium, the hockey turf and supporting infrastructure, would cost $62.5m.

NPDC is looking to contribute $38.5 million towards development, and a further $13.1m operating costs, with work on the hub building, housing six indoor courts and multi-use space, starting in 2026-27.

A project execution team to support the project director is now in place and work streams have been defined around partnerships and business case development, the report to the committee said.

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