Lancaster Park's demo nears end

The demolition is expected to be completed in December. Photo: CCC
The demolition is expected to be completed in December. Photo: CCC
A familiar sight on the city’s skyline, Lancaster Park stadium, is almost down.

The deconstruction of the earthquake-damaged stadium is due to be completed in December this year.  Only some of the concrete frames in the two remaining stands – the Paul Kelly and Deans stands – are now left.

It comes as the city council will decide on Thursday whether to adopt a plan for the redevelopment of the site. 

The plan includes sports fields for winter sporting codes such as rugby and football, cricket grounds for summer use, play areas and "community" space. 

The original memorial entrance gates will be retained. 

A plan for the redevelopment was been developed in conjunction with sporting and community groups and was released in July.

City councillors will decide on Thursday whether to adopt this plan for Lancaster Park.
City councillors will decide on Thursday whether to adopt this plan for Lancaster Park.

Project director Lee Butcher said the stands are being broken down into sections.

“We call these frames. The frames are the main structural elements of the stands and very tricky to demolish in position so they are toppled to the ground where they can be further broken down, and the steel extracted.

“We’ve been focusing on reducing the weight of each section of the stand and making the structure as light as possible before the main columns can then come down. We also know that trying to break these frames up when they’re at their normal height is noisy and dusty. Getting them down as soon as possible gives us a better opportunity to reduce any issues,” he said.

More than 3500 tonnes of steel has been salvaged and more than 30,000 tonnes of concrete has so far been transported to a private development in Rangiora for use in land remediation. All the demolition material will be removed from the site by January next year.

The Tui stand at the southern end of the stadium was demolished last year and the Hadlee Stand was demolished in 2012 for safety reasons.

Head of parks Andrew Rutledge said many Cantabrians have a strong connection to Lancaster Park.

“The park certainly holds a very special place in many Cantabrians’ hearts and it will take a while to get used to not having this familiar landmark in our city.

“Our aim is to get the park open to the public as soon as we can so the first stage of the redevelopment will be establishing a publicly accessible green space that can accommodate community sport, and casual recreational use,” he says.

 

 

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