Decision on 2008 Park upgrade

Park to get $3.8m upgrade

A $3.8m upgrade of Trafalgar Park as an outdoor events centre has been approved. The modified $3.8m option will:

  • Upgrade the turf and drainage
  • Upgrade the pavilion
  • Add an electronic scoreboard
  • Install new toilets
  • Shape the northern embankment
  • Replace the perimeter fencing
  • Upgrade the entranceways
  • Replace the turnstiles

The decision allows the cycle track to be retained.

Council also conditionally approved consideration of further work up to $2.55m dependent on the continuation of the Makos and the Rugby World Cup bid. That additional work could include upgrade of lighting, upgrade of the northern embankment, and possible removal of the eastern grandstand.

Mayor Kerry Marshall said, “The submitters who wrote and spoke before Council had many valid concerns. Dominating their comments were the present economic climate and the issue of Council priorities, concerns we all shared. What became clear, however, is that a majority of people were in favour of upgrading Trafalgar Park in some way. The cycle track will remain and Trafalgar Park will move towards becoming the region’s leading outdoor events centre.”

The $3.8 million dollar commitment to upgrade Trafalgar Park will be spread out over three years, the first being 2008/09 where $800,000 is already committed.  The additional $3.0 million translates into a 0.37% rates increase in 2009/10, 0.92% in 2010/11, and 1.09% in 2011/12, as a percentage increase over 2008/09 if no other contribution towards the cost of the upgrade of this regional facility is received.

Mayor Marshall also said that the decision was taken noting that Council has plans to undertake a review of budget expenditure, including capital projects, to reprioritise its work and, taking that into account, hoped the cost of upgrading Trafalgar Park will not add an additional rates burden. The reprioritisation will review all expenditure, capital and operating, as part of the LTCCP process. Council regards this as important given the economic downturn.

As part of the decision making process Council read more than 850 submissions and heard from close to 50 submitters. Consultation opened on 3 September with the approval of a Statement of Proposal by the New Zealand Auditor General’s office.