Federal Member for Page Kevin Hogan said the $3 million upgrade Lismore’s Oakes will help the grounds become northern New South Wales’ premier sports facility, capable of hosting premiership AFL, rugby league, soccer, and rugby union matches.
“Upgrading the oval’s spectator and player facilities will have a hugely positive effect on the region. I’m particularly excited that AFL peak bodies have already identified Oakes Oval as a potential venue for high level events,” Mr Hogan said.
This is a big-ticket redevelopment project, involving an extension of the grandstand roof cover, expanding the on-field playing area to boost spectator capacity and make it suitable for AFL games, replacing the ground’s change rooms and toilet facilities and installing a new electronic scoreboard.
Mr Hogan announced today that a re-elected Federal Government will contribute $1.4 million to the project, with the AFL, Lismore City Council and the Lismore Swans AFL matching the funds in cash or in-kind.
“The oval will be the same width of the Sydney Cricket Ground and only about one metre shorter. And like the SCG, the new larger Oakes Oval will be the perfect place to watch cricket in the summer and Aussie Rules in the winter,” Mr Hogan said.
“Already there are talks to play Sheffield Shield cricket and preliminary rounds of the AFL on the new Lismore Oakes Oval.”
“This funding pledge is great news for Lismore’s businesses and those throughout the entire region,” Mr Hogan said.
“More money going through local cafes, clubs, motels and other small businesses means more support for existing jobs and the potential to create new ones.
“This is all part of my plan to create sustainable communities for local families and businesses, while attracting new residents and investment from further afield.
“I congratulate Lismore City Council for its leadership and financial commitment to the project, as well as the AFL and Lismore Swans AFL club which will also contribute to the upgrade.”