Stanley St getting an upgrade :D
Council offers $2m toward tennis centre roof
By Bernard Orsman
Auckland Tennis is being offered a ratepayer grant of $2 million towards a sliding roof over centre court in Stanley St - but only if it can raise another $4 million and gain resource consent.
The city's main tennis stadium, which hosts the international ASB Classic and Heineken Open tennis events, is undergoing a $24 million redevelopment that includes new facilities, such as a rooftop swimming pool, and a major revamp of the courts.
The complex will have spa and sauna rooms, three swimming pools and a hair and beauty salon.
Auckland Tennis would like to add a $6 million waterproof sliding roof over centre court to provide shelter from rain and a shade for the stands.
However, this is outside the budget for a new centre, most of which is being funded by Next Generation Clubs, which has four similar tennis and multi-purpose venues in Australia.
Auckland Tennis approached the Auckland City Council about an immediate grant of $1.35 million to build a truss for the roof in its current work programme, but this was rejected because of reservations about the ability of the organisation to raise the balance and the risk of ratepayers being asked to put in more money.
Instead, the council's arts, culture and recreation committee has offered to make a grant of $2 million, subject to Auckland Tennis raising the other $4 million and obtaining the necessary resource consents.
Plans showing the roof overhanging the road make this tricky.
Committee chairman Greg Moyle said Auckland Tennis would not receive the grant unless it met the conditions, but the council backing would make it easier to apply for money from other sources, such as the ASB Trust. Mr Moyle said there was no budgeted funding for the $2 million grant, which would probably occur under the new Super City.
If the council had made a $1.35 million grant in its final budget this year, officers estimated it would have led to a 0.25 per cent rates increase.
Auckland Tennis chief executive Greig Bramwell said he understood the council's reason for not making an unconditional grant, which meant the truss could probably not be part of the current work programme.
Mr Bramwell said there was "plenty of work to do" in raising the extra $4 million and gaining resource consent. Building the roof would probably have to wait until after June next year, when the first stage was due for completion.
Thank you for everything Mercedes, now please be nice to Socrates for me, perhaps fetch him a bird or two. We love you, always.