Sports chief excited by proposed layout

By Roger Moroney

1 comment
Mark Aspden, CEO Sport Hawkes Bay.  HBT15112703
Mark Aspden, CEO Sport Hawkes Bay. HBT15112703

When Sport Hawke's Bay CEO Mark Aspden first caught sight of the plans for the proposed multi-sports and velodrome centre council is looking at for Napier he was impressed.

"It is a very cool design and I have seen examples of it working," Mr Aspden said.

"While it is not for us to say it is a 'must-do' it certainly would be an asset."

The main component of it being an 'asset' is what Mr Aspden said was a pressing need in Napier for indoor sports space.

"It would be a potential solution to that - it could open up more options for events."

Sport across the community was strong and venues were essential, and additional indoor sports space would take the pressure off the Pettigrew Green Arena which was also used for trade, hospitality and lifestyle events.

When days were scheduled for such booked events it meant indoors sports events had to step aside for that time.

That impacted particularly on sport at secondary level which splits into seasons and terms.

A large-scale centre also had the potential to widen the net in terms of hosting major tournaments and events in Napier, to the benefit of the region.

Mr Aspden said the proposed multi-sports and velodrome was a different prospect to what Sir Graeme Avery had put together.

He was impressed by what Sir Graeme had produced and said it would be a welcome addition to the region's sporting landscape.

But it would house community health and fitness gymnasiums, health tutorial rooms, offices and sports science rooms and a sport hall and climbing wall rather than out-and-out courts and sporting surfaces.

The proposed Napier venue would be devoted to courts and the velodrome.

While it would definitely be an asset, and well used, Mr Aspden said the proof of whether it would be set to take off or not came down the funding process, and how the public would react to the prospect of potentially being part of that.

"It is the limited resources - that is the challenge here."

Sport Hawke's Bay were not on the resource-seeking list but were involved in the overall consultations about the requirements of sport in the region.

"I am interested to see how it transpires," Mr Aspden said.

- Hawkes Bay Today

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