Winter weather delays completion of West Stand's new roof

Taranaki rugby fans are counting down to the reopening of the iconic Yarrow Stadium when the Yarrows Taranaki Bulls return home on 3 September.

The international-quality hybrid turf will be ready for the action under the new eco-friendly LED lights but delays to the construction project mean the roof of the West Stand won’t be completed until later this year, and there will be no covered seating available during 2022.

Mike Nield, Director-Corporate Services at Taranaki Regional Council which owns the venue through the Taranaki Stadium Trust, said contractors had pulled out all the stops to get the roof done and dusted but the winter weather has meant the construction crew had been unable to complete this part of the project safely.

“The team has worked very hard to get the roof installed in time for this season’s games but unfortunately the weather has not played ball. The project team had allowed for 25 rain days in the programme and the number of rain delay days to the project has been over double this.

“It’s disappointing but the weather is out of our control so we’re asking fans to be prepared for rain or shine. We may be the sunshine capital of Aotearoa but it’s still winter so please wrap up warm or bring a raincoat when you come along to cheer on the Bulls.”

Mr Nield said the delay in completing the installation of the new roof would not impact on the budget for repairing the West Stand.

The West Stand has now been earthquake-strengthened as part of the project to repair the stadium after both the West and East stands were found to be earthquake-prone. The East Stand has been demolished and construction work starts this year with the new stand due to be completed by 2024.

The project has received funding from the Government’s Covid Infrastructure Recovery fund.

 Fast facts

  • The West Stand will reopen on 3 September.
  • The Yarrows Taranaki Bulls take on Waikato in the Bunnings NPC.
  • The Yarrows Taranaki Bulls play Manawatu on 16 September and Counties Manukau on 21 September.