Colac's Central Reserve surface upgrade
A $750,000 upgrade of the Colac's Central Reserve’s playing surface will commence at the end of this year’s football season.
Colac Otway Shire Council hopes that the Central Reserve will be a position to host AFL practice matches, VFL games and TAC Cup matches once the upgrade is complete.
Victorian Minister for Sport and Recreation Hugh Delahunty yesterday (17 June, 2012) announced funding of $350,000 towards the project.
The funding announced by Minister Delahunty will be combined with $150,000 from Council’s Local Government Infrastructure Program allocation, and $250,000 from Council’s 2012-13 budget, subject to the budget being adopted.
Mayor Stephen Hart welcomed Minister Delahunty’s announcement, saying the Victorian Government’s support was vital to the project.
The long-awaited surface upgrade will involve the removal of the top 50 millimetres of playing surface, comprising the grass, weeds and thatch.
Contractors will construct a 250 millimetre loam base, and create new “design levels” for the surface.
The surface will be maintained by a new automated irrigation system and drainage network.
Cr Hart said the new all-weather surface would be capable of hosting local, regional, state and national level sporting events.
“For many years we have struggled with the surface, which gets extremely waterlogged during wet winters,” he said.
“The new all-weather surface will mean the oval can cater for sports of all types, from football to soccer, athletics or school sports carnivals, at any time of the year.”
Chief Executive Officer Rob Small said the oval would be grassed with Santa Ana Couch sprigs.
“We are hopeful that the new surface will be ready for the 2013 football season, and we will do everything we can to achieve that deadline,” he said.
“However, we can’t put an exact date on when it will be ready. The grass growth will be dependent on the weather,” he said.
Council has engaged SportsTurf Australia to prepare detailed design and specifications, and assist with project supervision. The company has managed major projects at Essendon’s Windy Hill, Ballarat’s Eureka Stadium, and Geelong Grammar’s Glamorgan.
Mr Small said Council had called for tenders at the weekend.
“We hope to appoint a contractor by July, with work to commence as soon as the Colac and District Football Netball League and the Geelong Football League seasons are over,” he said.