Contractors have broken ground on the Les Hughes Sports Complex precinct upgrade, as Moreton Bay Regional Council fast-tracks major projects in response to COVID-19.
It marks the beginning of the $6 million makeover of facilities and fields for Pine Rivers Pumas Rugby Union and Pine Rivers Rapids Baseball.
Mayor Peter Flannery says these works will be crucial to keeping locals in the workforce and boosting cashflow in the region.
“Our community, and society more broadly, is going through an unprecedented social and economic change, and it’s the job of all levels of government to do to whatever we can to position Australia for a bounce-back,” Mayor Flannery says.
“This means major construction jobs will become even more pivotal to stimulate the economy, which is why council’s expediting every job we can. We’re already accelerating a further $2 million worth of asset maintenance work as part of our initial $15 million coronavirus relief stimulus package, and we’re working on the next wave of stimulus.”
Division 8 Councillor Mick Gillam says the rugby union club will receive a new home ground, while retaining its current main oval as a second oval.
“The third oval will be converted for multi-purpose and overflow use,” Cr Gillam explains. “This includes new turf, irrigation, field lighting, as well as new roads and the construction of carparks.
“The old rugby union clubhouse will be demolished, and the current baseball clubhouse will receive major upgrades to accommodate both sports under one roof.
“That means rugby union will have its own office, storage, changerooms and amenities in an extension to be constructed alongside the current clubhouse as well as an additional canteen that will be shared with baseball.
“Each sport predominantly plays in different seasons with minimal crossover making it ideal for sharing of facilities.”
Pine Rivers Pumas president Amanda Oldfield says the club is rapt with the work being done.
“While we’re not able to get out and play right now, these upgrades will have a huge impact on how we run the club once the coronavirus settles and it’s safe again,” Amanda says.
“We hope once this is all over, the new fields and clubhouse will help us expand our junior numbers and provide families with a much-needed outlet. We are very much looking forward to continuing our relationship with the baseball club and to sharing our brand-new facilities.”
The baseball club will also receive a new bullpen and equipment shed as part of the redevelopment works.
Pine Rivers Rapids president Sherie Hogan says these works are a bonus for the club which needed the upgrades.
“I can’t wait to see what our new clubhouse looks like once construction is complete and it should allow us to grow baseball in the region,” Sherie says.
“We will all need a break from being cooped up inside for so long once the coronavirus pandemic is over, and baseball is a great way to get outside and exercise.
“In the meantime, I hope everyone can stay safe and active the best they can and we look forward to seeing you all for the next season.”
During the past eight years, Moreton Bay Regional Council has invested $150 million into new and upgraded infrastructure for local sport.
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