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Birkenhead grandstand removal begins

Published: 15 October 2018
Kaipatiki Local Board Chair John Gillon and deputy chair Danielle Grant.

Work to remove the Birkenhead War Memorial Park grandstand building will begin on Monday 15 October.

It was decided earlier this year that the grandstand needed to be removed as soon as possible due to the ongoing health and safety risks.

The project is due to take a month to complete with one contractor, Green Way, leading the demolition and TROW Group working on salvage aspects of the job.

The aim is to divert no less than 95 per cent of the salvaged material from going to landfill.

Local sports clubs that have registered an interest in salvaged items have first right of refusal, while rest will go to other charitable organisations or be sold off.

Construction of a new multi-sports facility

Kaipatiki Local Board Chair John Gillon says the demolition is the first step in plans to provide a new multi-sports facility on or close to the site of the old stand, which was opened with War Memorial Park by Governor-General Lord Cobham on 19 April 1958.

“Our local board advocated for increased funding for improving and maintaining council-owned facilities at Birkenhead War Memorial Park as part of council’s 10-year Budget,” he says.

“That includes construction of a multi-sports facility. We will start on a business case once a master plan for the park has been completed and adopted in late-2019.”

In June, the council’s Governing Body approved $14 million in additional funding for regeneration of the park, on top of an approved $8 million budget allocation.

Design and consenting work for the new facility are currently scheduled to occur in 2021, with project build and delivery taking place in 2022.

Gillon says the funding approval is good news for local sports clubs and park users and that the board is working to bring construction plans forward.“We are currently in discussions to try and achieve this,” says Gillon.

Council facilities at the park include the Osbourne Pool, Birkenhead Leisure Centre, a Skate Park, BMX pump track, as well as the grandstand.

Fencing and safety signage will be installed on site ahead of demolition and community and sports groups have been notified about the start date.