Victoria Park Redevelopment Project Boosts Local Economy Through Pandemic Slowdown

Work on the $3.1 million Victoria Park redevelopment is progressing with the laying of a new field base, irrigation system and turf at No.1 Oval now complete.

The expansion of No.1 Oval to a full-sized cricket field is the final stage of a project that also saw the construction of a new clubhouse and addition of a new car park between No.2 and No.3 Ovals. A state-of-the-art scoreboard has also been installed at No.1 Oval as a complementary project.

Mayor of the Dubbo Region Ben Shields said the upgrades would bring No.1 up to international standard and boost the city’s chances of hosting major sporting events.

“Dubbo has a great reputation for staging sporting fixtures and carnivals, and No.1 Oval has played host to some of those fantastic events over 140 years. This redevelopment will bring No.1 Oval up to the highest standard and will allow Dubbo to compete to host Women’s Big Bash and trial Men’s Big Bash games, as well as trial AFL games. It will also provide an even better venue for local competitions,” Councillor Shields said.

Supporting local businesses through the $1.411 million project was a high priority for Council with more than 75 per cent of the total cost going to local suppliers. More than 3200 man-hours have gone into the removal of the former playing surface, cycling track and fencing, and the installation of the new base, irrigation system and turf.

Councillor Shields said with the disruption the COVID-19 pandemic has caused to the local economy, it was essential Council proceed with projects to provide work for local businesses.

“We know that it will be years until our economy recovers from the setback of COVID-19 but the more we can do now to soften the blow, the faster the recovery will be,” Councillor Shields said.

Local businesses engaged for the No.1 Oval project include sand and gravel suppliers, irrigation material suppliers and labour, and concrete suppliers and contractors.

A local turf provider was also engaged through the tender process. However the unusual combination of extreme dry then consistently wet weather earlier this year, hindered ongoing maintenance and mowing of turf and extreme rain in the days leading up to Monday, 4 May, 2020 meant the turf was unable to be cut and transported.

Due to the tight timeframes around funding obligations and the need to have the playing field ready for the upcoming season of sport, it was necessary for an alternative turf supplier to be found.

“While the wet start to 2020 has been welcomed across the region, one of the unfortunate side-effects is that it wasn’t conducive to the preparation of the turf but I am pleased with the way everyone worked together to find an alternative solution,” Councillor Shields said.

With the turf laying completed, work will now concentrate on ensuring the Legend Couch turf bonds with the base. It is expected the new surface will be ready for use in mid-October, in time for the upcoming sports season.

Last Edited: 17 Jun 2020

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