Council grants boost Hibiscus Coast sport facilities

Publish Date : 15 Sep 2023
Council grants boost Hibiscus Coast sport facilities

Ōrewa Surf Life Saving has protected people in and around water for over 70 years and now it’s council’s turn with a $2 million dollar grant from its Auckland Council’s Sport and Recreation Facilities Investment Fund, says Albany Ward Councillor John Watson.

Along with the grant for the Ōrewa Surf Life Saving Community Hub redevelopment, YMCA North’s plans for a sports hub at Metro Park East also got a boost with a $23,000 grant.

Councillor Watson is pleased with this investment in the Hibiscus Coast.

“These types of projects take many years to develop so a massive thank you to council for supporting them. The facilities will benefit the local community and the wider region for many years. Although they are non-council facilities, they are going to be very important to Auckland's overall sporting network.”

Ōrewa Surf Life Saving Vice President John Chapman is ecstatic to receive cornerstone funding to develop the new community hub.

“This is a major step forward for the community hub which will create a legacy for future generations of beachgoers in the region.

“We can operate our surf life saving service out of the hub, protect people enjoying our beautiful beach and offer social, business and function spaces for all.

“We are very fortunate to have wonderful support from club members, experts in the field of community sports and environmental preservation, Surf Life Saving New Zealand, Auckland Council, Hibiscus and Bays Local Board and the Ōrewa community.”

The new community hub will have storage for rescue equipment including boats and vehicles, changing facilities, a first aid room, club operations space, meeting spaces, and function rooms. In addition, there is space for the wider community and club social activities with a cafe and bar. There will be a separate lifeguard tower on the beach with medical and first aid facilities.

At Metro Park, the sports hub will be flexible enough to accommodate future needs as the community grows and changes. As a multi-use facility, it plans to offer a range of sports and recreation infrastructure including indoor basketball courts, squash courts, gym and studio spaces, play spaces and sports club facilities, co-located with community and commercial services.

Hibiscus and Bays Local Board Chair Gary Brown welcomes the funding as the area needs sports and recreation facilities.

“We know how much our community values sport and recreation. We need facilities that can cater for our growing population and also that are positioned further back from the ocean. We helped fund feasibility studies for the surf club and more recently funding for a concept plan for YMCA North. We are grateful for the drive and dedication of everyone involved in these projects which take many years.”

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