The new Central Oval complex is nearing completion, with the final fit out underway and due for completion in late December, 2014. The complex, boasting three large courts, meeting rooms, change rooms, and upstairs viewing platform and function spaces, forms part of a redeveloped precinct that will change the way we watch and play sport in Port Augusta. It will provide one large community area for people to gather to play and watch a range of sports in a central precinct, encompassing Central Oval, the tennis courts, Braddock Park, and Hancock Stadium.
Located next to Braddock Park and the Tennis Courts, and with netball courts about to be built, the area will be a central meeting place for the Port Augusta community and for visitors from the region.
While the facility is not due to be opened until early in 2015, trial events will be held including the Positive Ageing Expo held on October 16, and the regional basketball carnival on November 1 & 2.
There has been a high level of interest in booking the facility for weddings, expos, meetings and large conferences, considering the facility is not yet officially open. All events will provide economic spin-offs to business operators in the City. Construction of the netball courts will commence in November 2014, and patrons are encouraged to utilise car parks at TAFE, Braddock Oval, inside the Central Oval complex and along Augusta Terrace. It is anticipated the courts will be completed by April 2015. Landscaping works are also underway and are due for completion early in 2015.
Port Augusta City Manager John Banks said it is wonderful to see the high level of interest and excitement the community is showing in the new Central Oval complex.
“We are very keen to have this wonderful facility open as soon as we can. Prior to official March opening, we will be trialing a variety of events that are suited to the limited access due to site works. By hosting the events, any defect issues will become apparent and we can get them addressed early in the one year defect period, rather than keeping the building closed until March, leaving us less time. There is no doubt the Port Augusta community, and the region, have a fantastic facility that will serve it well for generations to come.”
Tours of the site will be offered prior to the official opening in March 2015, with dates to be advised. For any information on Central Oval, including booking enquiries following the March opening, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
In September Council endorsed the iconic name ‘Central Oval’ for the redeveloped oval precinct. Central Oval’s heritage dates back to World War I with West Augusta Football Club playing its first game at the Oval in 1915.
Council believes it is important that the history of the oval is retained and one of the best ways to do that is to formally adopt the name that is widely known, used and respected.
At the same meeting, Council also adopted a new brand for the Oval. The brand takes its style from the City Brand in terms of colours and interpretation. The general theme is meeting place or central location. A style guide for the brand will be developed that sets out how the brand will be used.
Council also noted that there will be a need to name specific areas within the precinct after legendary sports and community personalities. This will be accommodated after further consultation with the Community.
Badge Constructions Pty Ltd was appointed as the builder of the $16m community facility in July 2013, with site works beginning in September the same year. The project has been more than a decade in the planning, and has been realised thanks to external funding from the State and Federal Governments as well Council contributions.
Included in the precinct are an AFL standard football oval, netball courts and the two-story multi-use stadium. This is the centre piece of the project and features three multi-use courts, an upstairs function area with viewing to both the ovals and the indoor courts, and retractable walls that will open the stadium onto a plaza precinct.
Other features include:
The State Government has provided $5m in funding, the Federal Government provided a further $5m through the Regional Development Australia Fund and Port Augusta City Council will fund $6m.