Not sure if this issue has done the rounds before, but I just wanted to highlight an article in today’s Herald. Seems a little unfair given funding proposals towards an upgrade on Leichhardt were rejected by the State government. Seems to be like there is a bit of A-League Wanderers bandwagoning going on here - especially given the Eels results over the past 2 seasons.
Push for Parramatta Stadium precinct ahead of new venue
August 28, 2013
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Refurbishment plan: Parramatta Stadium. Photo: Getty Images
A further $9 million has been provided for the upgrade of Parramatta Stadium. Fairfax Media can reveal the state government will provide a $6 million grant, while Parramatta City Council has pledged $3 million.
The total committed is now $29 million after the federal government allocated $20 million last month towards a refurbishment for the home of the Parramatta Eels and Western Sydney Wanderers.
‘‘It will increase the capacity with the addition of 4000 seats to the north and south end of the terraces and improve player facilities which are about 28 years old,’’ Parramatta MP Geoff Lee said. ‘‘It will also result in an extension to the training field to the full size.’’
The funding announcement is timely news for the Eels, who will collect consecutive wooden spoons. There will be another positive off-field announcement soon with confirmation of Fantastic Furniture as the club’s new major sponsor.
The state government has signalled a policy towards stadium consolidation, with the options of building a new stadium in western Sydney or upgrading an existing venue. Lee is pushing for the latter in the hope of transforming Parramatta Stadium into a 35,000-seat facility and community precinct.
‘‘I will advocate for a whole part of the precinct to be devoted to a community sports hub,’’ he said. ‘‘We want the precinct to be built so during game day the area doesn’t stop. Instead of building a new stadium somewhere else, why not locate one where people want to go.’’
The Eels have shifted their round 25 match against the Dragons from ANZ Stadium to Parramatta Stadium, considering the likelihood of a small turnout at the larger venue. The Monday night fixture is their last home game of the season.
‘‘This week is member-appreciation round at the Eels, and this venue change will let our Eels members and fans enjoy the last home game of the season in the place where they feel most at home,’’ interim chief Matt Phelan said. ‘‘This has been a tough season, and the support of our Eels members has been incredible, so we hope to see a good turn out by the Blue and Gold Army as we say thank you for that.’’
Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/rugby-league/league-news/push-for-parramatta-stadium-precinct-ahead-of-new-venue-20130827-2soe7.html#ixzz2dEMHEbW8