Arrowtown sports centre near

Consent closer: An artist’s impression of the new Arrowtown Community Sports Facility

The start line is in sight for the long-awaited Arrowtown Community Sports Facility, to be erected in Jack Reid Park.

ACSF Trust chairman Murray Bennett told the Otago Daily Times building consent would be lodged by the end of the month for the building, which has been about 10 years in the planning.

Simultaneously, the trust would put the project out for tender.

Bennett says he’s “absolutely” confident consent would be granted and he expects the project would be completed by April.

The total cost of the work was estimated at $2.05 million. That included: the multipurpose building with capacity for about 160 people, depending on the usage; a new car park; new road access; levelling of the rugby field, which would be moved slightly; and new floodlights, drainage and irrigation.

To date, the trust has raised just under $2 million.

Bennett says once tenders are in, the trust would know if it needs to “look at a very quick fundraiser” to get the total project across the line.

“We’re quietly quite confident we can do the whole … works in one hit.

“At the end of the day we can’t drop the building out, we need a roadway to the building and we need a car park.

“The only variable is the field [but] we don’t want to do this nice building … and the rugby field is still three-quarters of a metre fall from one end to the other.

“Now is the time … I see the field as part and parcel of the whole big picture.

“We’ve got to shift things like floodlights anyway for the building, we’ve got to shift services for the building — we’re half the way through the field anyway, it’s almost like we can’t not do it.”

Bennett says while the project has taken far longer than initially expected, it has been important for it to take its time.

“The responsibility to get it right lies on us.

“We have to make this work — we’ve got one pot of money.

“We’ve taken our time and it’s taken longer than we had wanted by a long stretch but, at the end of the day, it’s better to do it right …  [than] cry over spilled milk and say, ‘We’ve got it wrong’.”

Asked the cause of the delay in lodging building consent, which had been expected to happen in April, Bennett declined to answer.

Otago Daily Times